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"Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: Unceded Territories" wins 2016 City of Vancouver Book Award

October 3 2016

2016 City of Vancouver Book Award winner Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: Unceded Territory by artist Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun and editors Karen Duffek and Tania Willard

Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: Unceded Territories​, a bold and provocative retrospective art exhibition catalogue, is the winner of the 2016 City of Vancouver Book Award. 

Artist Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun and editors Karen Duffek and Tania Willard were presented with the prize on Monday evening at the 2016 Mayor’s Arts Awards.

Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: Unceded Territories, published by Figure 1 Publishing and the Museum of Anthropology at UBC, presents Yuxweluptun’s political and visually stunning art with astute and accessible discussions of the politically charged and aesthetically complex dimensions of the artist’s work.

Produced for a major exhibition of Yuxweluptun's work, the book frames 30 years of the artist’s grappling with the complicated intersection of colonial suppression, politics, environmentalism, indigeneity, and activism on unceded territories. As the City of Vancouver works to move towards reconciliation with local First Nations and the urban Aboriginal community, the book provides a timely challenge to the notion of what Vancouver is.

Attend a public event

You're invited to join Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun at the Vancouver Public Library’s event featuring the winner of the Book Award on Thursday, October 13 at 6:00pm at the CBC Studio 700. This event is free and does not require registration.

Get the event details

Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun, artist

Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun, an artist of Coast Salish and Okanagan descent, graduated from the Emily Carr College of Art and Design. Influential as both an artist and activist, he merges traditional iconography with powerful representations of the environment and the history of colonization. His work has been displayed in international group and solo exhibitions, including at the National Gallery of Canada and has received the Vancouver Institute for the Visual Arts (VIVA) Award. 

Karen Duffek, editor

Karen Duffek, curator of Contemporary Visual Arts and Pacific Northwest at the Museum of Anthropology at UBC, has produced publications and exhibitions at the museum’s Northwest Coast Aboriginal collections which have focused on the relationship of 20th century and contemporary art to cultural practice. 

Tania Willard, editor

Tania Willard, of the Secwepemc Nation, is an artist and independent curator. Her recent exhibitions include: “Beat Nation: Art Hip Hop and Aboriginal Culture”, co-curated with Kathleen Ritter, which was first presented by the Vancouver Art Gallery and went on to Toronto’s Power Plant, and “Custom Made” at Kamloops Art Gallery. Tania recently received the prestigious Hnatyshyn Foundation curatorial award.

Shortlisted titles

The two other titles shortlisted for the 2016 Book Award are:

  1. The Revolving City: 51 Poems and the Stories Behind Them (Anvil Press and SFU Public Square) edited by Wayde Compton and Renée Sarojini Saklikar
  2. That Lonely Section of Hell (Greystone Books) by Lorimer Shenher


The shortlisted titles and winner were chosen by an independent jury. The winner receives a cash prize of $3,000. Since 1989, the Vancouver Book Award has recognized works which demonstrate excellence and contribute to an appreciation and understanding of Vancouver’s history, unique character, or achievements of its residents.

Learn about the Vancouver Book Award