The Salt Spring National Art Prize offers $40,000 in awards.

The Salt Spring National Art Prize is a biennial competition and exhibition of Canadian visual art. The next event will be in 2019, with the call for artist submissions opening on January 10, 2019.

The intent of SSNAP is to encourage artists whose practice demonstrates originality, quality, integrity and creativity—resulting in significant work with visual impact and depth of meaning.

Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada who are eighteen years of age and older as of January 1, 2018 are invited to submit their two-dimensional and three-dimensional work for consideration.

Approximately 50 finalists will be selected by an independent jury from across Canada to participate in the Finalists’ Exhibition on Salt Spring Island. All artists’ submissions will be anonymous to the jury. The finalists’ works will not be revealed to the public until the Gala Opening Night on Saturday September 21, 2019.

The exhibition will be open daily from Saturday September 21 through Monday October 21, 2019. All finalists will be featured with their entries in a professional exhibition catalogue. All finalists’ works will be available for purchase during the exhibition.

Finalists may be selected to win one of nine awards, six selected by jurors and three selected by public vote. The award winners will be announced at the Gala Awards Night on Saturday October 19, 2019.

This exciting endeavour is an initiative of the Salt Spring Arts Council, which represents the arts for Salt Spring Island, British Columbia, known as one of Canada’s premier arts communities.




The Joan McConnell
Award + Residency
for Outstanding Work

Award + Residency

$15,000 + Salt Spring Island Artists Residency in 2020 to the value of $5,000

4 x $3,000

Four available

4 awards of $3,000 each

Four Jurors’ awards representing the individual choices of each juror



Salt Spring Artists Award

For outstanding work by a Salt Spring artist


Three Rosemaria Behncke Awards

3 Awards

Determined by a vote of Exhibition visitors.
1st Prize - $3,000
2nd Prize - $2,000
3rd Prize - $1,000

SSNAP 2017 Closing Gala

Meet the Jurors

2019/2020 Jurors


David Balzer

David Balzer is the author of two books, Curationism: How Curating Took Over the Art World and Everything Else, winner of ICA London’s 2015 Book of the Year, and the short-fiction collection Contrivances.

He has written about art and culture for the Globe and Mail, the Guardian, Frieze, Artforum, The Believer and others, and is currently editor-in-chief and co-publisher of Canadian Art.

Sandra Meigs

Sandra Meigs is dedicated to painting and to the possibilities of enchantment that painting presents through colour, form and imagination. She believes that the very authenticity of one’s experience offers proof that what is imagined when looking at a painting is as real as anything else that one experiences in the world. She has also inter-woven sculpture, film, sound, and other media in her works.

She is Professor Emeritus at the University of Victoria, where she taught Painting, Drawing and Integrated Media. Recent exhibitions include Room for Mystics, at the Art Gallery of Ontario, The Glass Ticker, Susan Hobbs Gallery, Toronto, and Entangled: Two Views on Contemporary Painting at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Meigs won the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts and the Gershon Iskowitz Prize at the AGO in 2015. She resides in Hamilton, Ontario.


cheyanne turions

cheyanne turions is the Curator at SFU Galleries in Vancouver and sits on the Board of Directors at 221A. She has previously held positions at the Art Metropole, SBC galerie d’art contemporain and the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Her work positions exhibitions and criticism as social gestures, where she responds to artistic practices by linking aesthetics and politics through discourse. Recent projects include I continue to shape at the Art Museum at the University of Toronto and the research residency No Person’s Land with DAM Projects in London, UK. Since 2008, she has been the co-director of No Reading After the Internet, a salon series concerned with understanding the act of reading aloud as its own media form.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from the University of British Columbia and a master’s degree in Visual Studies from the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design at the University of Toronto.

Ian Wallace

Ian Wallace was born in Shoreham, England, to Canadian parents, in 1943.  After completing his studies at the University of British Columbia and graduating with a Master’s Degree in Art History, he taught art history at UBC from 1967 to 1970 and at the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design from 1972 to 1998.
Wallace has been active as an exhibiting artist in the Vancouver region since 1965.  Through his writing teaching and exhibitions, Wallace has been an influential figure in the creation, promotion and appreciation of innovative processes in contemporary art and in the development of an internationally acknowledged photographic and conceptual art practice in Vancouver. 
In 2004 he was the recipient of the Governor General’s Award for the Visual Arts and in 2013 appointed Officer of the Order of Canada. Also in 2013, he was honored with The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal. In 2014, Wallace was awarded the Chevalier de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture.


2017 Jurors


David Garneau

David Garneau (Métis) is associate professor of visual arts at the University of Regina. His practice includes painting, drawing, performance art, video, curation, and critical writing.

He recently co-curated (with Michelle LaVallee) Moving Forward, Never Forgetting, an exhibition concerning the legacies of Indian Residential Schools, other forms of aggressive assimilation, and (re)conciliation, at the Mackenzie Art Gallery in Regina. And (with Tess Allas) With Secrecy and Despatch, an international exhibition about massacres of Indigenous people, and memorialization, for the Campbelltown Art Centre, Sydney, Australia.

Garneau has given talks in Australia, the United States, and throughout Canada. He is currently working on curatorial projects in Sydney, New York, and South Africa; is part of a five-year, SSHRC funded, curatorial research project, ‘Creative Conciliation’; and is working on two public art projects in Edmonton.

His paintings are in numerous public and private collections.

Denis Longchamps

Dr. Denis Longchamps has been the artistic director and chief curator at the Art Gallery of Burlington since May 2013.

From 2006 to 2012, Dr. Longchamps was the administrator of the Gail and Stephen A. Jarislowsky Institute for Studies in Canadian Art at Concordia University. Then from 2012 to 2013, he was the exhibition and publication manager at The Rooms Provincial Art Gallery, in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

He received his PhD in art history in 2009 and was a research fellow at the Yale Centre for British Art in 2010.

Dr. Longchamps regularly contributes essays, articles and reviews for magazines and journals such as Espace-Sculpture, Ceramics monthly, Ceramics Art and Perception, and the journal of The Picturesque Society. As well, he has curated over 45 exhibitions and is presently involved with an international research project, Naked Craft, of which the exhibition toured in Canada and Scotland.

Dr. Longchamps was the publisher and managing editor of Cahiers métiers d’art : Craft Journal.


Naomi Potter

Naomi Potter is the director/curator of Esker Foundation in Calgary.

From 2009 to 2011, she was curator of Walter Phillips Gallery at The Banff Centre where she produced solo projects and exhibitions with many artists including Anthony Burnham, Geoffrey Farmer, Melanie Gilligan, Brian Jungen, Ragnar Kjartansson, Silke Otto-Knapp, and Ron Terada. More recently she has worked to develop projects at Esker Foundation with Peter von Tiesenhausen, Cedric Bomford, Cynthia Girard, Mia Feuer, Colleen Heslin, Etienne Zack, and Jasmina Cibic to name a few.

In 2003, Potter was awarded a year-long Deutsche Akademische Austauschdienst (DAAD) artist residency in Istanbul, and from 2003 to 2007 was co-director of the international artist residency program at CESTA in the Czech Republic. In 2015, she was a guest of both the Australian Arts Council and British Council International Curatorial Visit programs, and a jury member for the Sobey Art Award (2016) and the RBC Canadian Painting Competition (2014).

Potter holds a BFA from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, and an MFA in sculpture from Concordia University, Montreal.


2015 Jurors


Vicky Chainey Gagnon

Vicky Chainey Gagnon is a contemporary art curator currently based in St John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador where she holds the position of director/chief curator of The Rooms, Provincial Art Gallery Division.

She is a graduate of the bachelor of fine arts program in art history and film studies at Concordia University and the master of arts program in interdisciplinary studies at York University. As a curator, Chainey Gagnon has initiated contemporary art exhibitions and film screenings in Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg and Quebec City.

She has acted as a juror for provincial and national arts competitions, and has also sat on selection committees for the collections of the Musée National des Beaux-arts du Québec and the Leonard and Bina Ellen Art Gallery at Concordia University. In May of 2014, Chainey Gagnon curated the Quebec City based international biennale, Resistance: And Then, We Built New Forms.

Holger Kalberg

Holger Kalberg is a Winnipeg based artist currently teaching at the University of Manitoba. Born in Germany, he first studied English literature before coming to Canada to study fine art at the Alberta College of Art and then at Emily Carr University, where he graduated in 2001. In 2007, Kalberg received his master of fine art from the Chelsea College of Art in London, England. Short listed for the RBC Painting Competition in 2002, 2004 and 2005, he juried for that same competition in 2013.

Represented in Canada by Monte Clark Gallery in Vancouver and Toronto, Kalberg has had solo exhibitions abroad in London, Geneva, and Duisburg, Germany. His work originally used architectural based imagery to explore the relationship between photo and painting. He now uses self-made source material to explore and critique the legacy of high modernism, the art object as commodity and image making in the digital age through sculpture, painting and works on paper. His most recent exhibition was The Family at Monte Clark Gallery in Vancouver in August 2014.


Ian Thomas

Ian Thomas is a long time member of the art community on Salt Spring Island. Educated in England and with a master of arts in art education from the University of British Columbia, he went on to teach at the University of British Columbia and Camosun College in Victoria.

In his own work Thomas has used painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, installation, words and performance. His installation Swallows Meadows toured British Columbia in the 1990s—a project which carried on through two more exhibits shown at The Point Gallery in 2008 and 2009. Thomas’ current work addresses humanities’ place in the landscape, but also reflects his ongoing concern with memory and the frailty of the human condition.

Respected as a juror on Salt Spring Island for the integrity of his opinions and the insight he brings to any discussion of the visual, Ian juried for the Regional Arts Council and for British Columbia Cultural Services with Gordon Smith. He is represented on the island by Pod Contemporary Gallery.

2017 Jurors Choice Awards


Juror – Denis Longchamps

Artist – Diana Thorneycroft ‘Guard on the Edge (of the forest and the night)’


Juror – David Garneau

Artist – Jan Little ‘Jael Suddenly Found Herself With That Beard She’d Long Dreamt Of’


Juror – Naomi Potter

Artist – Katherine MacNeill ‘Offroad East Of Oyama BC’

Jury Guidelines

The intent of the Salt Spring National Art Prize is to encourage artists whose practice demonstrates originality, quality, integrity and creativity, resulting in significant work with a real impact and depth of meaning.

The jurors must declare any interest they have in submitted entries to the organizers. Conflicts of interest will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Jury Process

The Salt Spring National Art Prize employs a three-stage jurying process.

Stage 01

Each entry will be screened by the organizers to ensure that conditions of entry are met. Entries that do not meet the requirements stated in the Conditions of Entry will not be adjudicated.

Should there be an overwhelming number of entries eligible for adjudication, the organizers reserve the right to establish a shortlist prior to the jurying procedure.

Stage 02

An independent, online jury of three visual arts professionals who represent different areas of expertise, will select approximately 50 finalists from the eligible or short-listed entries. Members of the jury will be selected from across Canada.

No names, addresses or other identifying information from the submissions will be disclosed to the jury during the second phase of the jury process.

Entrants will be informed of pre-selection results. The list of exhibition finalists will be posted on this website. Images of the finalists’ works will be posted on this website after the Gala Opening event.

Inclusion in the exhibition is at the jurors’ discretion and their decision is final. No correspondence will be entered into.

Stage 03

The same jurors will select the winners of the Joan McConnell Award, the Jurors Choice Awards and the Salt Spring Artists Award at an in situ viewing of the exhibition.

The winners of the Rosemaria Behncke People’s Choice Awards will be determined by public vote during the exhibition.

All award winners will be announced at the Gala Awards event.

A jurors’ exhibition tour and discussion will be held the morning following the Gala Awards event.