Governor General’s Awards in Visual and Media Arts

Sandra Semchuk Photographer

Sandra Semchuk on family, identity and the nature of change

A film by Anthony Grieco

"Sandra Semchuk’s work reminds us of the necessity to continually rethink our positions as artists, as speaking subjects, as listeners."

“For [Sandra] Semchuk, practices of dialogue, recognition, and trust are very real day-to-day work (and leaps of faith), with her peers, with artists, with students, elders, and with strangers.” - Jen Budney, Independent writer and curator

“Sandra Semchuk’s work reminds us of the necessity to continually rethink our positions as artists, as speaking subjects, as listeners.”

Curator Andrea Kunard notes that "her take on photography as collaborative project is a vital contribution to the medium – not as an imposition of a will but as a way of working towards an understanding of a problem. She asks the viewer to enter that process of self-examination with her. She is careful and attentive to material, she has tremendous skill and an amazingly good eye. That kind of expertise in technical and working process, and how she wants to engage viewers, come together in a unique way, in that her collaborations are not just with her subjects but also include people in the gallery space."

- Althea Thauberger, artist (nominator)

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See this artist’s work in the Art Bank collection

Selected works

Sandra Semchuk, Self Portraits, 1977-1981, silver gelatin print, 27.94 cm x 35.56 cm each print.  Remai Modern (formerly Mendel Art Gallery) collection

Sandra Semchuk, Self Portraits, 1977-1981, silver gelatin print, 27.94 cm x 35.56 cm each print. Remai Modern (formerly Mendel Art Gallery) collection

Sandra Semchuk, In Baba's Bedroom, Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan, 1977, silver gelatin print, 27.94 cm x 35.56 cm. National Gallery of Canada collection.

Sandra Semchuk, In Baba's Bedroom, Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan, 1977, silver gelatin print, 27.94 cm x 35.56 cm. National Gallery of Canada collection.

Sandra Semchuk, Self-Portrait, Galiano Island, 1988, photographic installation - 41 cibachrome prints, 27.94 cm x 35.56 cm each print

Sandra Semchuk, Self-Portrait, Galiano Island, 1988, photographic installation - 41 cibachrome prints, 27.94 cm x 35.56 cm each print

Sandra Semchuk (collaboration with James Nicholas), Confederation, 2007-2014, five Light jet photographs, 76.2 cm x 95.25 cm each print. Image 3 Text by James Nicholas "I was wondering why we weren't invited to the ball"

Sandra Semchuk (collaboration with James Nicholas), Confederation, 2007-2014, five Light jet photographs, 76.2 cm x 95.25 cm each print. Image 3 Text by James Nicholas "I was wondering why we weren't invited to the ball"

Sandra Semchuk, I am afraid of + what you fear, 2010-12, two Light jet photographs, 58.42 cm x 119.38 cm each print

Sandra Semchuk, I am afraid of + what you fear, 2010-12, two Light jet photographs, 58.42 cm x 119.38 cm each print

Sandra Semchuk (collaboration with Jerry DesVoignes), In every tree breath, 2015, film, 11:40 mins

Sandra Semchuk (collaboration with Jerry DesVoignes), In every tree breath, 2015, film, 11:40 mins Play Video on YouTube

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