Image: Jack Sures, Near Al’s Place, 1975, earthenware clay, acryllic oil enamel paint, 52.2 x 52.2 x 15.5 cm. MacKenzie Art Gallery collection. Photo: Don Hall
The Canadian Crafts Federation is thrilled to congratulate ceramic artist, Jack Sures, winner of the 2018 Saidye Bronfman Award for excellence in contemporary fine craft. This great honour, the highest bestowed for craft practice in Canada, is a distinction that few can claim. With this award, Jack joins a storied group of only 42 craft artists, each of whom has created an extraordinary body of work and made a lasting impact on craft in Canada.
A legendary figure in Manitoba’s craft community, Jack’s work has changed the landscape of ceramics practice there, and beyond. His efforts over more than 60 years have moved the field of ceramics, and craft overall, forward by leaps and bounds. After establishing a ceramic studio with colleague Ron Burke, which featured the province’s first gas kiln, he launched a ceramics program that persists to this day at the University of Regina. At this institution, he spent 33 years enlightening and inspiring students and colleagues alike, an act he continues to accomplish as a regular visiting artist. Throughout all this, Jack maintained and expanded a personal practice in contemporary fine craft steeped in beauty, and often paired with a lighthearted, charming humour.
One of eight Governor General’s Visual Arts Awards for 2018, Jack’s announcement as the Bronfman winner means he also joins the ranks of artists recognized with this national honour. The Canadian Crafts Federation congratulates all the winners of this year’s award as we celebrate the many ways that cultural leaders contribute to our collective experience as Canadians. Thank you to Jack, and all the winners, for sharing their work with the world.