The November 20 2020

Prix Powerhouse 2020 - Award ceremony

La Centrale galerie Powerhouse is pleased to announce the winners of the Prix Powerhouse 2020: Jenny Lin and Shanna Strauss. Congratulations to the artists!

The jury composed of Dorothy Alexandre, Miriam Ginestier, Jacinthe Loranger, Alice Ming Wai Jim and Victoria Stanton, selected the artists for the quality of their work and their contributions to the Montreal artistic community.

The artists, in addition to receiving a prize of $5,000 each, will have the opportunity to work together during an artistic residency and exhibit their work at La Centrale from November 20 to December 12, 2020.

Due to the exceptional context of the pandemic, the residency will take place online in the form of activities with the artists and the exhibition will be visible from La Centrale's window display from November 20 to December 12, 2020.

An award ceremony (Facebook event) will take place online on November 20, 2020 at 6:30 pm.

Jenny Lin is a storyteller, a creator of visual narratives. She has been exploring experimental narrative agency and autobiographical fiction for twenty years. Ranging from print-based installations, artists’ books and zines, to video, web-based and augmented reality works, her projects address queerness, discomfort, emotional catharsis, and relationship hierarchies. The episodes of interiority Lin depicts are not confined to the intimate and personal – of graphic pathologies and memory games. They are also spaces where everyday life experiences, moments of joy and anxiety, pain and anguish, are inextricable from external forces whether accidental, violent, or cataclysms of planetary proportions. In recent work, Pandemic Drawings (2020) chronicles the collective experience of anti-Asian racism and multiple vulnerabilities related to COVID-19 while fundraising posters in solidarity with Black / Trans / Lives Matter combat systemic anti-Black racism and police brutality. Through the grief and fear, frustration and uncertainty of our time, Lin’s offerings are gestures of community and hope. Lin works collaboratively with Eloisa Aquino as B&D Press, a micropress/art project focusing on queer, feminist content and QTBIPOC communities. She currently teaches at Concordia University as a sessional instructor in the Print Media Program Area.

Shanna Strauss is a mixed-media visual artist who employs different materials and techniques in her practice, specifically, photo to wood transfer. For more than 10 years she has used art to tell herstory and the story of Black people in the African diaspora who have marked her journey. Through her sensitive and striking portraits, which bring together scenes of intimacy and cultural heritage, Strauss values their individual and collective contributions to North American society. In this way, her work contributes to a decolonial and anti-colonial rewriting of Black history. As systematic racism and racial injustice continues to be reproduced, Strauss’ effort towards restoration serves as both a denunciatory and reparative gesture. In collaboration with various artists and organizations, she often participates in discussions and projects driven by anti-colonial and decolonial discourses, including Unceded Voices Anti-Colonial Street Artists Convergence in Montreal/Tiohtià: ke in 2019. After completing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in California, Shanna Strauss shifted towards the Social Sciences and completed a Masters in International and Community Development at McGill University. A deeply committed individual, she has worked with youth with whom she uses art as a means of personal and social transformation. Her thriving career and social activism stimulate the vitality of Montreal’s arts community.

The Prix Powerhouse

The Prix Powerhouse is a 10 000$ biennial recognition award shared between two Montréal artists to celebrate their artistic journey. It is destined to artists who identify as women or gender minorities who have reached the mid-stage in their careers and contribute in a significant way to Montréal’s cultural life.

It is part of La Centrale's mandate which purpose is to disseminate feminist artistic practices and to support the visibility of artists and initiatives with little or no representation in mainstream cultural institutions.

La Centrale would like to recognize the generous contribution of an anonymous donor, making this prize possible for a 7th edition.