The West Coast Book Prize Society announced the winners of the 2020 BC Book Prizes in a virtual awards ceremony on September 19, and Carpe Fin by acclaimed artist Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas was selected as recipient of the Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize. This prize is awarded to the book that contributes the most to the enjoyment and understanding of the province of British Columbia published in the previous year.
Yahgulanaas began creating pop-graphic narratives, riffing on traditional Haida stories and painting techniques, and quickly developed the distinctive art form for which he is most widely known. “I started off trying to do comic books because comic books are about accessibility,” he says. A trickster-like sense of humour contributes to his work’s appeal. Yahgulanaas’s other books include Red, Flight of the Hummingbird, A Tale of Two Shamans and Hachidori, a bestseller in Japan. The artwork from Carpe Fin is currently on exhibition at the Seattle Art Museum. Yahgulanaas lives on Bowen Island, British Columbia.
The Roderick Haig-Brown Prize comes with a cheque for $3,000. The winners of eight other awards for fiction, poetry, children’s literature, non-fiction and others were also announced on September 19, 2020. For a full list, please visit the BC Book Prizes website.