1. Funding
  2. Prizes
  3. Molson Prizes

Canada Council for the Arts Molson Prizes

Mary Kerr and David Lyon

Mary Kerr and David Lyon

Photo: David Higgleton Photography (bottom)

Current winners

Mary Kerr (Arts)

Mary Kerr has forged a distinguished career as a production designer in both national and international theatre, dance, opera, feature film, television, exhibition, and special event design. Her unique sets and costumes have been described as kinetic sculpture on stage characterized by experimentation with architectural concepts, scale, unusual materials, colour, distortion, non-realism, and often-satiric cultural commentary on the human condition. Her multi-faceted, internationally awarded, published, and filmed practice has defined a truly original Canadian theatrical aesthetic in all her areas of creation. Kerr was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the only theatre designer so honored.

David Lyon (Social Sciences and Humanities)

David Lyon is Director of the Surveillance Studies Centre at Queen’s University. Educated at the University of Bradford, UK, Lyon’s early work was in secularization studies. He began studying and publishing on surveillance in the mid-1980s. He has written 30 books—translated in to 18 languages—and many articles and book chapters. His latest book is The Culture of Surveillance (2018). He has led several large collaborative research projects on surveillance, with research funding totalling almost $8 million. His work has been recognized in Canada, Switzerland, the USA, and the UK with fellowships, prizes, awards, and an honorary doctorate.


Read more about the 2020 winners

What is this prize?

The Canada Council for the Arts Molson Prizes are awarded to two persons – one in the arts and the other in the social sciences and humanities, who have distinguished themselves by their outstanding achievements. The prizes are intended to encourage ongoing contributions to Canada's cultural and intellectual heritage.

These prizes are administered by the Canada Council in collaboration with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). The winners are chosen by a peer assessment committee, which is appointed jointly by the Canada Council and the SSHRC.

Prize amount

Two prizes valued at $50,000 each

How to qualify

Nominations must be submitted to the Council by a third party (individual or organization).

A peer assessment committee will select the recipients from among all the nominations received.

For eligibility criteria, the nomination form and further information on these prizes, see the Canada Council for the Arts Molson Prizes Guidelines.



1 November 2020

Who created this prize?

These prizes are funded by an endowment from the Molson Foundation.

Contact information

Sarah Brown

Program Officer, Prizes


1-800-263-5588 (toll-free) or 613-566-4414, ext. 6004


November 2020


Prize amount


By nomination



Nomination Form (DOC)

Note that the updated guidelines will be posted two months prior to the deadline.

Cumulative list of winners

We are committed to equity in all our activities, including the administration of our prizes and awards.