Visual artist Arnold Jacobs is the recipient of the 2019 Ontario Arts Council Indigenous Arts Award. This award, created in 2012, celebrates the work of Indigenous artists and arts leaders who have made significant contributions to the arts in Ontario.
Arnold will receive this $10,000 award on Saturday, October 12, 2019, during an afternoon reception at the Woodland Cultural Centre (184 Mohawk Street, Brantford, ON).
One of Arnold’s personal career highlights was creating the eagle design that was embossed on Air Canada’s Boeing 767 jet airliners from 2001 to 2008.
Another was having his painting Deliverance of Sky Woman featured at McMaster Children’s Hospital, where its depiction of the mother goddess offers a protective spirit for the hospital’s patients
The jury members were unanimous in selecting Arnold for this award, stating:
“Long before Indigenous visual arts were getting widespread critical attention, Arnold was creating seminal works that gave us a deeper understanding of who we are. He has gained an impressive following for his bold, vivid and engaging work – while at the same time opening the door for so many others, in his own quiet and humble way. We want to thank Arnold for more than 40 years of sharing our cultural narratives and beliefs within our communities, and around the world.”
The OAC Indigenous Arts Award also honours emerging leadership: each year, the award recipient is invited to nominate a rising Indigenous artist or arts professional to receive a $2,500 prize. Arnold has selected visual artist Montana Adams as this year’s emerging laureate.
Close-up from Montana Adams’s painting The Last Stand.