June 21, 1949 |
Little Longlac, Ontario
|Notable work(s)||Away, The Underpainter, The Stone Carvers, Sanctuary Line|
|Notable award(s)||Governor Generals Award, International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, Officer of the Order of Canada, Marian Engel Award, Harbourfront Festival Prize, Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres,|
Jane Urquhart, Order of Canada OC (born June 21, 1949) is a Canadian novelist and poet. She is the author of seven internationally acclaimed novels including: The Whirlpool, Changing Heaven, Away, The Underpainter, The Stone Carvers, A Map of Glass, and Sanctuary Line.  She is also the author of a collection of short fiction, Storm Glass, and four books of poetry, I Am Walking in the Garden of His Imaginary Palace, False Shuffles, The Little Flowers of Madame de Montespan, and Some Other Garden. Her books have been published in many countries, including Holland, France, Germany, Britain, Scandinavia, Australia, and The United States, and have been translated into several languages. Urquhart has received the Marian Engel Award and the Harbourfront Festival Prize, and is a Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in France and is an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Born 200 miles north of Thunder Bay, Ontario in the tiny mining town of Little Longlac (now part of Greenstone), Ontario, Urquhart is the second of three children and the only daughter of Marian (born Quinn) and Walter Carter, a prospector and mining engineer. The family lived in their northern outpost until they moved to Toronto when Jane was six. Urquhart spent her later childhood and adolescence in Toronto, where she was educated at Havergal College, a private school for girls. She received her first B.A in English literature (1971) from the University of Guelph and returned in 1976 to complete a second degree in art history. She now resides in South-Eastern Ontario with her husband, artist Tony Urquhart. The Urquharts have one daughter, Emily, who was born in 1977.
Urquhart is the author of seven internationally acclaimed novels: The Whirlpool, which received Le prix du meilleur livre étranger (Best Foreign Book Award) in France ; Changing Heaven; Away, winner of the Trillium Award and a finalist for the prestigious International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award; The Underpainter, winner of the Governor General’s Award and a finalist for the Rogers Communications Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize; The Stone Carvers, which was a finalist for The Giller Prize and the Governor General’s Award, and for Britain’s Booker Prize; and A Map of Glass, a finalist for a regional Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best Book, and Sanctuary Line, a finalist for Giller Prize. She is also the author of a collection of short fiction, Storm Glass, and four books of poetry, I Am Walking in the Garden of His Imaginary Palace, False Shuffles, The Little Flowers of Madame de Montespan, and Some Other Garden. Her work, which is published in many countries, has been translated into numerous foreign languages. Urquhart has received the Marian Engel Award and the Harbourfront Festival Prize, and is a Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in France and is an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Urquhart has received numerous honorary doctorates from Canadian universities, including the University of Toronto and the Royal Military College, and has been writer-in-residence at the University of Ottawa and at Memorial University of Newfoundland, and, during the winter and spring of 1997, she held the Presidential Writer-in-Residence Fellowship at the University of Toronto. She has also given readings and lectures in Canada, Britain, Europe, the U.S.A., and Australia, has twice been a keynote speaker at the annual Canadian Congress of the Humanities, and has served on the Board of PEN Canada and on the Advisory Board for the Restoration of the Vimy Memorial. She has served on several international prize juries including that of the International Dublin IMPAC Award, the Giller Prize, and the American International Neustadt Award.
Awards and honours
In 1992, her novel The Whirlpool was the first Canadian book to win France's prestigious Prix du Meilleur livre etranger (Best Foreign Book Award). Her third novel, Away, remained on The Globe and Mail''s national bestseller list for 132 weeks (the longest of any Canadian book), and won the 1994 Trillium Book Award.
In 1994 Urquhart received the Marian Engel Award, presented to female Canadian novelists in mid-career for her entire body of work. In 1996 she was named to France's Ordre des Arts et des Lettres as a chevalier, and Away was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the world's largest literary prize for a single work of fiction. In 1997 Urquhart was asked to serve on the jury for this award.
In the fall of 1997, her fourth novel, The Underpainter, was published to wide critical acclaim, winning the 1997 Governor General's Award for English Fiction, and becoming a fixture on the national bestseller lists.
In 2001 she published The Stone Carvers, a highly acclaimed international bestseller that was a finalist for both the Giller Prize and the Governor General's Award, and was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize.
In 2005, Urquhart was named an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Urquhart's books have been published in many countries, including the Netherlands, France, Germany, Britain, Scandinavia, Australia, and the United States, and have been translated into several languages.
- The Whirlpool. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1986.
- Storm Glass. Erin, ON: Porcupine's Quill, 1987.
- Changing Heaven. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1990.
- Away. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1993.
- The Underpainter. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1997.
- The Stone Carvers. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2001.
- A Map of Glass (2005)
- Sanctuary Line (2010)
- Storm Glass (1987)
- I'm Walking in the Garden of His Imaginary Palace: Eleven Poems for Le Notre. Toronto: Aya Press, 1982.
- False Shuffles. Victoria: Porcépic, 1982. Toronto: Aya Press, 1982.
- The Little Flowers of Madame de Montespan. Erin, Ontario: Porcupine's Quill, 1984.
- Some Other Garden. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2000.
- Selected and introduced The Penguin Book of Canadian Short Stories. Toronto: Penguin, 2007.
Except where noted, bibliographic information courtesy Brock University.
- http://www.collectionscanada.ca/ecrivains/ "Jane Urquhart" in Canadian Writers
- "Jane Urquhart," Canadian Women Poets, BrockU.ca, Web, Apr. 13, 2011.
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (April 2009)|
- "Planet" from Some Other Garden, online at CBC Words at Large
- "Jane Urquhart" in Canadian Writers, an examination of archival manuscripts, typescripts, correspondence, journals and notebooks at Library and Archives Canada
- "Jane Urquhart's husband, Tony Urquhart"
- A selection of 10 poems relating to Niagara from False Shuffles transcribed with permission on the Niagara Falls Poetry Project website
- "Jane Urquhart" author's biography Goodreads Author Biography
-  The Whirlpool Books at McClelland.com
-  Jane Urquhart: Biography, Canadian Poetry Online: 2000.
- Jane Urquhart's entry in The Canadian Encyclopedia
- Jane Urquhart's video in Les podcasts de la sorbonne nouvelle
- Canadian Poetry Online: Jane Urquhart (Biography and six poems (Shadow, The Baroque Bed, The One Before, Venetian Gondoliers at Versailles, All Around the Palace, Hall of Mirrors)