Mayor's Arts Award for Lifetime Achievement

Mayors Arts Award for Lifetime Achievement - 2016 Honouree - Gordon Smith

This award recognizes an individual who has made significant contributions over his or her lifetime to the cultural vibrancy of our city.

With the addition of the Lifetime Achievement Award, the program includes awards in fifteen categories, including performing and studio art forms, and support of the arts through volunteerism and philanthropy.

2016 recipient

Gordon Smith


Gordon Smith is a key figure in contemporary Canadian art. For 75 years, he has worked to expand the dialogue between abstraction and representation.

Throughout his career he has made paintings employing a procedure of looping and overlapping, the movement of line to line, texture into texture and colour into colour. Gordon immigrated to Canada in 1933 where he attended the Winnipeg School of Art. Upon his return from fighting in WWII, he settled with his wife, Marion, in Vancouver, and graduated from the Vancouver School of Art.

His awards include the Order of Canada (1996) and the Audain Prize for Lifetime Achievement in the Visual Arts (2007). Gordon’s work is included in the National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa), Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto), Museum of Modern Art (New York), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), and the Vancouver Art Gallery. He lives and works in West Vancouver, BC.

Past recipients

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2015 recipient

2014 recipient

2013 recipient

2012 recipient