The Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada (2020 or 2021)

2022–23 Ticket Information

FAB Gallery, 1-1 Fine Arts Building
University of Alberta
(780) 492-2081

Gallery Hours
Tuesday to Friday

Admission is free. Masks are strongly recommended indoors on the University of Alberta campus.

The Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada (2020 or 2021)

January 17 – February 10, 2023

FAB Gallery
Second Floor

Opening Reception

University of Alberta faculty, staff, students and invited guests
Tuesday, January 17
FAB Gallery

About the Exhibit

2020 marked the thirty-ninth anniversary of the Alcuin Society’s Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada. 109 Canadian publishers submitted books published during 2020 or 2021 with each title representing the work of Canadian book designers. 305 books from across Canada were entered in 9 categories, 37 were selected for awards.

Judging took place in Vancouver where the three jurors, Roberto Dosil, Elisa Gutiérrez, and Nayeli Jimenez, met to select the prize winners. The fundamental principle of the judging process is that all aspects of the book design must work to form an integrated piece. The judges examine and discuss the design of the dust jacket, binding, end papers, half-title page, copyright page, title page, page layout, typography, navigation for reference, integration of illustrations, chapter openings, running heads, reproduction of illustrations, clarity of printing and the choice of paper.

The categories include:

  • prose fiction
  • prose non-fiction
  • prose illustrated
  • poetry
  • pictorial
  • children’s
  • reference
  • limited editions
  • comics
About the Alcuin Society

The Alcuin Society is a voluntary association of people who care about the past, present and future of fine books. Founded in 1965, it is the only non-profit organization in Canada dedicated to the entire range of interests related to books and reading. These interests include authorship, publishing, book design and production, book selling, book buying and collecting, printing, binding, papermaking, typography and illustration.

The Society’s two main goals are to promote a wider appreciation of books and reading and to support excellence in book design and production. In support of these goals, it sponsors educational programmes, publishes a journal, and offers a prestigious award for excellence in Canadian book design.

The Society’s name “Alcuin” honours the memory of Alcuin of York (c. 735 to 804 ce), the Abbot of St. Martin at Tours, a man who cared deeply about books and literacy. As Charlemagne’s Minister of Culture, and a respected teacher, Alcuin encouraged the study and preservation of ancient texts, contributed to the development of the lowercase alphabet and helped establish numerous schools and libraries.

Since 1981 the Alcuin Society has sponsored the only national competition that recognizes and celebrates fine book design in Canada. Each year, publishers submit books to a panel of expert judges, who give the Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada.

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