Programs / William and Meredith Saunderson Prizes for Emerging Artists


The Hnatyshyn Foundation William and Meredith Saunderson Prizes for Emerging Artists consist of three awards of $5,000 each to support young emerging visual artists whose practice shows potential and is deemed to have the determination and talent to contribute to the legacy of art in Canada.


In past years, the candidates for this prize were selected by the winner of the previous year’s Hnatyshyn Foundation Mid-Career Award for Curatorial Excellence. This year, The Foundation has decided to cast a call for nominations. Representatives of public and private galleries, fine arts training institutions previously attended by the nominees, and artist-run-centres are invited to submit their nominations from March 6th to April 24th, 2023. Nominees will then be asked to upload their submission materials by May 15th, 2023.

Representatives from qualified institutions are invited to send a letter of nomination to the Foundation’s Director at with the subject line “Saunderson Prize nomination”

An institution may only nominate one candidate per year.

Nominations must include:

  • A letter of nomination on behalf of the nominating institution;
  • The nominator’s title at the institution;
  • The nominator’s phone number;
  • The candidate’s current city of residence and/or work;
  • The candidate’s email address and phone number;
  • A brief bio of the artist and/or a web link where their bio may be found


  • The prizes are awarded each year and a person may receive the award only once.
  • Eligible categories in the visual arts include painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, photography, three-dimensional installations and multi-media installations.
  • Candidates are identified on the basis of the jury’s estimation that have the determination and talent to contribute to the legacy of art in Canada.
  • Candidates must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada under 30 years of age as of December 31 of the current year.
  • The candidate must be an emerging professional artist (3 to 7 years of practice) whose body of work incorporates specialized training (not necessarily gained at an academic institution), a public presence and peer recognition.
  • The artist must demonstrate that their work has been featured in/acquired by at least 2 curated shows or 2 public collections in Canada in the last 5 years.
  • Undergraduate and college students are not eligible to apply.