Alcuin Society Announces Winners of 2016 Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada

The Alcuin Society announced the winners of its 34th annual competition awarding excellence in book design in Canada. 

The winning books will be entered in the international book design competition in Leipzig, Germany in February 2017. They will be exhibited in Germany at the Frankfurt and Leipzig Book Fairs; in Japan, at the Canadian Embassy in Tokyo, in conjunction with the Tokyo International Book Fair; and in every province of Canada.

Awards will be presented this fall in both Toronto and Vancouver. 

This year’s judges, Teresa Bubela, Denise Lapointe, and Paul Roelofs, selected 43 winning titles from 230 entries, from nine provinces and 99 publishers.

This year’s book design winners are:


First prize (tie): Michael Solomon, designer of A Year Without Mom, by Dasha Tolstikova (Groundwood Books);

First prize (tie): Robin Mitchell Cranfield, designer of Bluebird, by Lindsey Yankey (Simply Read Books);

Second prize: Michael Solomon, designer of Sidewalk Flowers, by JonArno Lawson (Groundwood Books);

Third prize (tie): Frank Viva, designer of Outstanding in the Rain, by Frank Viva (Tundra Books);

Third prize (tie): Kelly Hill, designer of The Adventures of Miss Petitfour, by Anne Michaels (Tundra Books).

Honourable mention: Kelly Hill, designer of This is Sadie, by Sara O’Leary (Tundra Books).


First prize: Crispin Elsted, designer of Fancy: 8 Odes of John Keats (Barbarian Press);

Second prize: Catherine D’Amours & Jolin Masson, designers of Pourquoi tu me shootes pas? by Catherine D’Amours (Catherine D’Amours);

Third prize: Jason Dewinetz, designer of KOBAYASHI, the Will, by Jake Kennedy (Greenboathouse Press);

Honourable mentions: Judith Poirer & Julien Hébert, designers of La chose imprimée 2010-2014, by Judith Poirier, Maryse Andraos, Joséane Beaulieu-April, Laura Fredducci & Laurence Olivier (La chose imprimée), 

Sigrid Albert, designer of Getting to Know You, by Christopher Levenson (New Leaf Editions)


Cameron McKague, designer of The Missing Novella, by Jon Davies & Derek Sullivan (Oakville Galleries).


First prize: Jessica Sullivan, designer of Anna Banana: 45 Years of Fooling Around with A. Banana, by Michelle Jacques (Figure 1 Publishing & Art Gallery of Greater Victoria);

Second prize (tie): Chélanie Beaudin-Quintin & Émilie Mannering, designers of L’envers du décor, by Chélanie Beaudin-Quintin, Guillaume Corbeil & Émilie Mannering (Les Éditions Michel Quintin);

Second prize (tie): Robert Tombs, designer of Robert Tombs: Index, by Michael Davidge, Ingrid Jenkner, Gemey Kelly & Marina Roy (Owens Art Gallery, Mount Allison University);

Third prize: E.A. (Zab) Hobart, designer of Sarah Angelucci: Provenance Unknown, curated by Emalie Chhangur (Art Gallery of York University).


First prize: Andrew Steeves, designer of Keeping Watch at the End of the World, by Harry Thurston (Gaspereau Press);

Second prize: Andrew Steeves, designer of The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl, by Sue Goyette (Gaspereau Press);

Third prize: Tatjana Petkovic, designer of My Banjo, & Tiny Drawings, by Phil Hall (Flat Singles Press).

Honourable mentions: Andrew Steeves, designer of The Year of Our Beautiful Exile, by Monica Kidd (Gaspereau Press),

Mark Laliberte & Gustave Morin, designers of Clean Sails, by Gustave Morin (New Star Books),

Natalie Olsen, designer of A Revision of Forward, by Wendy McGrath (NeWest Press),

Alan Hindle & Alana Green, designers of Rom Com, by Dina Del Bucchia & Daniel Zomparelli (Talon Books)


Natalie Olson, designer of We Can’t Ever Do This Again, by Amber McMillan (Wolsak and Wynn Publishers).


First prize: Terri Nimmo, designer of Harmless, by James Grainger (McClelland & Stewart);

Second prize: Andrew Steeves, designer of I Am What I Am Because You Are What You Are, by Carole Glasser Langille (Gaspereau Press);

Third prize (tie): Ingrid Paulson, designer of The Society of Experience, by Matt Cahill (Wolsak and Wynn Publishers);

Third prize (tie): Natalie Olson, designer of The Swallows Uncaged: a Narrative in Eight Panels, by Elizabeth McLean (Freehand Books).

Honourable mention: Andrew Steeves, designer of German Mills, by John Steffler (Gaspereau Press).


First prize: CS Richardson, designer of In Flanders Fields: 100 Years, edited by Amanda Betts (Knopf Canada);

Second prize: Andrew Steeves, designer of Hector Maclean, edited by Jo Currie, Keith Mercer, & John G. Reid (Gaspereau Press);

Third prize: Terri Nimmo, designer of Sixty: a Diary of My Sixty-first Year, by Ian Brown (Random House Canada).

Honourable mentions: Andrew Steeves, designer of My Life With Trees, by Gary L. Saunders (Gaspereau Press), 

Duncan Campbell, designer of The Education of Augie Merasty, by Joseph Auguste Merasty, with David Carpenter (University of Regina Press)


Peter Cocking & Nayeli Jimenez, designers of The School of Sophisticated Drinking, by Kerstin Ehmer & Beate Hindermann (Greystone Books).


First prize: CS Richardson, designer of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Decoded, by David Day (Doubleday Canada);

Second prize: Ainsley Johnston & Amanda Austin, designers of Warehouse Journal, Vol. 24, edited by Amanda Austin & Ainsley Johnston (University of Manitoba, Faculty of Architecture);

Third prize: Roberto Dosil, designer of Closing Time, by Daniel Francis (Douglas & McIntyre).

Honourable mention: Ingrid Paulson, designer of The Ward, edited by John Lorinc, Michael McClelland, Ellen Scheinberg & Tatum Taylor (Coach House Books).


First prize: Emanuel Cohen & Catherine Plouffe, designers of Au gré des champs: une historie de famille, d’agriculture et de cuisine, by Marie-Pier Gosselin & Virginie Gosselin (les éditions du passage);

Second Prize: Peter Kohut, designer of The Olive Oil and Vinegar Lover’s Cookbook, by Emily Lycopolus (TouchWood Editions);

Third Prize: CS Richardson, designer of A Field Guide to Canadian Cocktails, by Scott McCallum & Victoria Walsh (Appetite by Random House).

Honourable mention: Jessica Sullivan, designer of Montreal Cooks, by Jonathan Cheung + Tays Spencer (Figure 1 Publishing).

The Alcuin Society is a Vancouver based non-profit society for the support and appreciation of fine books. In addition to the annual book design competition, the Society publishes a journal, Amphora, and organizes lectures, workshops, exhibitions, and field visits on various aspects of the book. It also awards The Robert R. Reid Award and Medal, for lifetime achievement in the book arts in Canada.

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