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2022 Arts Writing Prize

The Southern Alberta Art Gallery Maansiksikaitsitapiitsinikssin is a leading contemporary public art gallery in Lethbridge. Over the course of 40 years, the Gallery has evolved from a grassroots initiative to become a significant participant in the national dialogue on contemporary art.

The Gallery is located on traditional territories of the Siksikaitsitapii, or Blackfoot Confederacy. We honour and acknowledge the Siksikaitsitapii, who have cared for these lands since time immemorial. We recognize that Treaty 7 territory is also home to the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III, and many other Indigenous peoples.

The Gallery is excited to announce the 11th annual SAAG Arts Writing Prize. This competition aims to recognize emerging arts writers, critics, poets, creatives, and students, providing them the opportunity to expand their practice. For the purposes of the award, an emerging writer is defined as anyone who has not published more than one piece of writing in a recognized print or online publication, exclusive of student-run journals and magazines, as well as self-published works.

Writers can submit to one or both of this year’s categories: Arts Writing and the Aruna D’Souza Award for BIPOC writers. Submissions have been extended to June 10, 2022 at midnight. The requirements and prizes for each category are listed below. Winners will be recognized at a reception at the Gallery on August 18. All entries are eligible to be published in the SAAG Arts Writing Prize Reader 2022, made in-house at the Gallery’s Tiny Press bookbinding studio. Participants will receive a copy of the publication. This prize is offered in partnership with Galleries West Magazine.

Eligibility

Writers must be at least 18 years of age at the time of entry. The competition is open to anyone residing in Canada, regardless of citizenship status, and to Canadians living abroad. All submissions must be original and previously unpublished, inclusive of online publications. Images are welcomed to be included as part of the texts.

Writers retain all copyrights to their submitted work. Selected winners consent to the inclusion of their work in the SAAG Arts Writing Prize Reader 2022. All submissions are eligible to be included in this publication, however, writers who have not been selected for an award may choose to opt out.

Participants may submit to multiple categories, but can only submit one work per category and will only be eligible to win in one category.

An electronic submission is preferred. Please email submissions, and any questions or accommodation requests to Courtney Faulkner, Public Engagement & Event Coordinator, at cfaulkner@saag.ca with the subject line, SAAG Arts Writing Prize. We ask that submissions include a brief biography for promotional use.

Categories & Prizes

Arts Writing

  • Open format arts writing: critical essay, exhibition review, poetry, prose, experimental text, creative fiction, photo essay, etc.
  • Maximum 1,000 words.
  • $1,000 prize; Gushul Studio Writer’s Cottage residency (Blairmore, Alberta) for 2 weeks in August, 2022; editorial mentorship opportunity to write and publish a current exhibition review for Galleries West.

Aruna D’Souza (BIPOC)

  • Open format arts writing: critical essay, exhibition review, poetry, prose, experimental text, creative fiction, photo essay, etc.
  • Maximum 1,000 words.
  • Author self-identifies as Indigenous, Black, and/or racialized.
  • $1,000 prize; Gushul Studio Writer’s Cottage residency (Blairmore, Alberta) for 2 weeks in August, 2022; editorial mentorship opportunity to write and publish a current exhibition review for Galleries West.

The Gallery is committed to continually working towards more equitable systems and practices. We welcome applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, Black, racialized, LGBTQ2S+, d/Deaf and disabled, and from poor and working-class backgrounds. If you have any questions, feedback, or require support or accommodations to access this application process, please contact Courtney Faulkner, Public Engagement & Event Coordinator, at 403.327.8770 x 22 or cfaulkner@saag.ca.

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