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The Grange Prize transforms into the AIMIA | AGO Photography Prize

One of Canada’s largest and most innovative art prize programs to expand

May 27, 2013 (Toronto, ON) — The Grange Prize for contemporary photography will now be known as the Aimia | AGO Photography Prize with a greater international focus and a new national scholarship program fostering the development of photographers across the country. Today Matthew Teitelbaum, Director and CEO of the Art Gallery of Ontario, and Vince Timpano, President and CEO of Aimia in Canada, announced the expansion of Canada’s largest and most innovative art prize program. The expanded Prize will feature a new national scholarship program that will recognize and develop the next generation of Canadian photographers. The Aimia | AGO Photography Prize will grant more than C$85,000 annually in cash prizes to photographers through the new scholarship and the prizes for the winner and three runners-up.

“The Prize will honour the core mission of the original Grange Prize, which is to engage the public in a dialogue about contemporary photography by connecting people with extraordinary Canadian and international talent, allowing the public to choose the winner,” said Matthew Teitelbaum. “The Prize will also continue to foster the growth of photography in Canada by providing all four shortlisted artists fully-funded residencies and exhibition programs.”

“After five groundbreaking years working together with the AGO on the Grange Prize, we wanted to take this important Prize to new heights by making several enhancements to build on its success,” said Vince Timpano. “We are particularly proud to be introducing the national scholarship program, granting more than $20,000 CDN each year to students whose artwork displays extraordinary potential in the field of photography.”

The scholarship program, valued at more than $20,000 CDN, is intended for full-time students—Canadian or international—who are entering their final year of study toward a bachelor’s degree of fine arts in photography. Eight respected and established visual arts institutions from across the country will participate this year with the hope of expanding the roster of participating schools in the future. This year’s partner schools are OCAD University, Ryerson University, Concordia University, Emily Carr University of Art + Design, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University (NSCAD), Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD), Université du Québec and the University of Manitoba. Each school will select one student via an internal competition for submission to the Aimia | AGO Photography Prize Scholarship Jury. The Jury will then select three students who will be awarded a scholarship to cover their final year’s tuition, and their schools will each receive a $1,000 honorarium.

Another addition to the new Prize is a shift to a fully international model, including a worldwide nomination process. In previous years a nominating jury from Canada and one select partner country would be assembled to nominate living artists for the Prize. The new Prize will invite a group of eight leading Canadian and international experts in photography (critics, curators or artists) to each nominate two artists for the Prize—one international and one from their home country/region of expertise, forming an international long list for the Prize. From there, a jury of three experts led by the Lead Juror (an AGO curator) will select a shortlist of four, including at least one Canadian artist. This year the Lead Juror is Elizabeth Smith, the AGO’s Executive Director of Curatorial Affairs.

The evolution of the name to the Aimia l AGO Photography Prize reflects the shift from the previous presenting company, Aeroplan, to its international parent company, Aimia, as presenting partner of the Prize going forward. This name change mirrors the exciting development of the Prize into a more international platform while remaining strongly based in Canada. The Grange Prize was built as a unique collaboration between the corporate and culture sectors displaying a new model of an innovative business/art partnership, and the Aimia | AGO Photography Prize will continue this legacy. Aimia is also the proud Signature Partner of the Photography Collection Program at the Art Gallery of Ontario.

Please watch for the long-list announcement in July 2013 along with programming highlights for the 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize.

For updates on the prize and additional information please visit:


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With a collection of more than 80,000 works of art, the Art Gallery of Ontario is among the most distinguished art museums in North America. From the vast body of Group of Seven and signature Canadian works to the African art gallery, from the cutting-edge contemporary art to Peter Paul Rubens’ masterpiece The Massacre of The Innocents, the AGO offers an incredible art experience with each visit. In 2002 Kenneth Thomson’s generous gift of 2,000 remarkable works of Canadian and European art inspired Transformation AGO, an innovative architectural expansion by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry that in 2008 resulted in one of the most critically acclaimed architectural achievements in North America. Highlights include Galleria Italia, a gleaming showcase of wood and glass running the length of an entire city block, and the often-photographed spiral staircase, beckoning visitors to explore. The AGO has an active membership program offering great value, and the AGO’s Weston Family Learning Centre offers engaging art and creative programs for children, families, youth and adults. Visit to find out more about upcoming special exhibitions, to learn about eating and shopping at the AGO, to register for programs and to buy tickets or memberships.

The Art Gallery of Ontario is funded in part by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport. Additional operating support is received from the City of Toronto, the Canada Council for the Arts and generous contributions from AGO members, donors and private-sector partners.

The AGO acknowledges the generous support of Aimia, Signature Partner of the Photography Collection Program.

For media inquires or interview requests, please contact:

Talvi Kuld
Arts & Communications
416.966.3421 x 204

JoAnne Hayes

Caitlin Coull
Art Gallery of Ontario
416.979.6660 x364

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