Roy Kiyooka

Roy Kiyooka

KIYOOKA, Roy (1926-1994)

Roy Kenzie Kiyooka was an influential Canadian photographer, poet and artist of national and international acclaim. He was a second generation Japanese Canadian, born in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan and raised in Calgary.

Kiyooka studied at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and Art, Alberta College of Art from 1946 to 1949, and in 1955 to 1956 he studied at the Instituto San Miguel de Allende in Mexico.

Following Kenneth Lochhead and Arthur McKay to the Regina College School of Art, he was the third instructor to be appointed. Along with Kenneth Lochhead and Arthur McKay, Doug Morton, Ted Godwin, Ron Bloore and Clifford Wiens were other artists heavily engaged in the Regina art scene. These young artists led the expansion of the Emma Lake Workshops by inviting major artists (or critics) as instructors. Kiyooka was one of the leading figures of this workshop and had great influence over decision making. The very successful 1959 workshop, which introduced abstract expressionist painting to Saskatchewan, was a crucial decision made by Kiyooka and his colleagues.

In 1960, Kiyooka’s new position at the Vancouver School of Art (Emily Carr College of Art and Design) required him to leave Regina, he became involved in poetry, photography, video, film, and music.

His book, Pear Tree Pomes, was nominated for the 1987 Governor General’s Award and in 1978, he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada

Archival Collections (Finding Aids in PDF format)

89-80 - Personal Photographs (Emma Lake). 1989