03/05/2013 11:30 EST | Updated 05/05/2013 05:12 EDT

Vancouver, Montreal artists shortlisted for $50K photo prize

Three noted photographers from Vancouver and Montreal have been shortlisted for the $50,000 Scotiabank Photography Prize.

Vancouver's Stan Douglas and Montrealers Angela Grauerholz and Robert Walker are the latest artists shortlisted for the fledgling prize, which celebrates excellence in a body of work by an established Canadian photographer.

The honour was established by famed Canadian photographer Ed Burtynsky, who teamed with Scotiabank to create the prize. The inaugural winner was Montreal's Lynn Cohen, with Toronto's Arnaud Maggs honoured in 2012.

Finalists selected 'for the power of their images'

The three "were selected for the power of their images and the fearlessness those images embody. Their talent is undeniable and their impressive work underscores why we established the Scotiabank Photography Award," Burtynsky said in a statement Tuesday.

Douglas, who works in film and installation art as well as photography, is known for creating layered work that reexamines specific settings, structures and subjects in a broader context. He was nominated by Robert Bean, an artist, writer and photography professor at NSCAD University.

German-born Grauerholz, who has been based in Montreal since 1976, is a designer and photographer known for creating dream-like imagery. Her work challenges and redefines the accepted norms of photography. She was nominated by Carol Podedworny, director and chief curator of the McMaster Museum of Art.

Walker is known for his brilliantly coloured street photography, after having documented dense urban environments in major cities for more than 30 years. More recently however, the Montrealer has turned his lens to flowers and the natural world. He was nominated by Cohen, the inaugural Scotiabank Photography Prize winner.

This year's finalists were nominated by peers from across the country, including curators, photographers, artists, gallery directors, art writers, professors and critics.

The 2013 winner will be announced on May 16. In addition to the $50,000 cash prize, the winner receives a solo exhibit at the 2014 edition of Toronto's Contact Photography Festival and a book deal with art book publisher Steidl.