2016 Year in Review
Beaverbrook Art GalleryDecember 28, 20160 Comments
2016 was a busy and exciting year for the Beaverbrook Art Gallery! With many exhibitions and programs, new and exciting acquisitions, and a great deal of progress on our pavilion expansion, we've had many reasons to celebrate. As 2016 draws to a close, we're reflecting on the past 12 months, and want to share a few of our many favourite moments and highlights of the year.
1. BRB/Off the Walls
On Saturday, January 23rd, we hosted two events to celebrate and say thank you to our current galleries on the eve of their makeover. It was very exciting to see the crowds waiting for the doors to open in the afternoon, where we welcomed some 750 people to join us in art making, dancing, and treats.
In the evening, over 200 guests took part in brb: the Beaverbrook Renovation BLOWOUT; thank you to all of those who attended and partied the evening away with us at this once in a lifetime event. Many tens of thousands of gumballs went into the re-creation of van Gogh’s The Starry Night, Lawren Harris’ Lake and Mountains, and C.M. Coolidge’s A Friend in Need during both events that day.
See the pictures here!
2. Gallery reopens in May
After a long hiatus of almost four months, we finally got to open our gallery doors again to the public at the end of May, and reveal the newly renovated and renamed Harriet Irving Gallery, as well as the renovated Orientation Gallery.
The crowd was all smiles enjoying refreshments, and a new exhibit A Tribute to Harriet Irving: Early Highlights from the Permanent Collection. We hope this excitement is echoed in 2017 when the new pavilion of the Gallery is finally unveiled to our cherished members and visitors from across the province.
See the pictures here!
3. King and Queen (cornuti)
September saw a brand new seven-foot tall sculpture added to our TD Sculpture Garden. The piece by Canadian artist Sorel Etrog is titled King and Queen (Cornuti), and sits outside the Gallery for all passersby to enjoy.
This was a major gift to the collection of this artist, who among other accolades represented Canada at the 1966 Venice Biennale and participated as an artist in Expo 67, and whose works are found in all major public art museums across Canada and have been featured in exhibitions and collections around the world, including: Museum of Modern Art, Guggenheim Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Centre Pompidou and the Smithsonian.
Read more here.
4. The Case of the Blank Canvas Bandit
Just who was the Blank Canvas Bandit, and what did he want with the Beaverbrook Art Gallery? That’s the case guests at our murder mystery in October had to try and crack. The event, a special, one-night-only murder mystery was hosted together by the Beaverbrook Art Gallery and Theatre New Brunswick as a fundraiser for the Gallery.
At the event, participants joined an eccentric cast of characters and uncovered the mystery of the Blank Canvas Bandit in the humorous, off-the-wall, and tongue-in-cheek look at the world of visual arts and the characters that inhabit it.
See the photos here!
5. Art Toronto
A small team of staff from the Beaverbrook Art Gallery attended Art Toronto in October this year. The opportunity to be a cultural partner at the event presented a unique forum for the Beaverbrook Art Gallery to reach the tens of thousands of visitors the event draws, and to share with the Canadian visual arts community some of its collection’s many treasures and our excitement about the Gallery's expansion. The Beaverbrook Art Gallery was, in fact, Art Toronto’s only Cultural Institution participant located east of Ontario.
Read more about Art Toronto here.
6. Critic in Residence
The Sheila Hugh Mackay Foundation Art Critic Residency Program was established by the Beaverbrook Art Gallery in 2015 to advance visual arts criticism and journalism in the development and appreciation of contemporary art in New Brunswick. In November of this year, the Gallery hosted its second critic in residence, Stephanie Buhmann.
Her residency in NB took place from November 9 to 15, involving several studio visits with local artists, a public lecture, and an art writing workshop. Her observations of the work of New Brunswick artists will be published in 2017 in the Gallery’s visual arts journal Billie: Undercurrents in Atlantic Canadian Visual Culture.
Read about the program here.
More highlights from 2016:
- Publication of issues 2 and 3 of Billie:Undercurrents in Atlantic Canadian Visual Culture
- Reflections by co-op student, Randi, added a discussion of some of our exhibitions
- Collecting our Thoughts added a curatorial discussion of artworks in the permanent collection
- New partnership with STU Yellow Box Gallery, featuring curator Jeffrey Spalding
- 14 exhibitions throughout the year, including two at STU Yellow Box Gallery
- Remembrance day programming throughout November - including a presentation of dance and poetry presented by George Street Middle School students and X-treme Dance
- New French language programming launched: pARTage
Here’s a look at our pavilion construction from December 2015 to now: What a difference a year makes! We’ve come a long way, and can’t wait to see it finished in 2017!