On November 29, the Ottawa Art Gallery received the largest private donation yet towards its new-building and capital campaign. The $1.5 million gift is from John and Jennifer Ruddy’s Trinity Development Foundation. (Total funds raised by the gallery are $5.1 million.)
“The Ruddys are a catalyst for growth within Ottawa and we are honoured to be a part of their commitment to this community,” said OAG board chair Lawson Hunter in a release. “Their support ensures that there will be a home to celebrate the arts for generations to come.”
The exterior of the OAG’s expansion has been named the John Ruddy Cube in honour of the donation.
Currently under construction next door to its present location inside Arts Court, the new OAG—located at the base of a mixed-use condo/hotel development—will expand to more than 80,000 square feet. It will house a 250-seat screening space that will be home to the Canadian Film Institute, a changing exhibition gallery, a permanent collection gallery, a studio for workshops, a café and gallery shop for visitors, and a new dedicated gallery space for the Firestone Collection of Canadian Art. The new OAG is scheduled to open in Fall 2017
Originally trained as an architect, John Ruddy is now part owner of the Grey Cup–winning Ottawa Redblacks football team and is a founder of Trinity Development Group, known for large-format retail centres. Philanthropically, Ruddy and his foundation have supported a number of Ottawa-based causes; he has served as honorary chair at the Royal Ottawa Hospital Campaign for Mental Health; and he was a lead donor for the revival of the football program at Carleton University after its 15-year absence.
NSCAD University got a $600,000 boost this week from Halifax-based DHX Media, home of Inspector Gadget, Teletubbies and This Hour Has 22 Minutes.
The $600,000 donation will be spread over six years as part of the company’s program to support the Canadian media industry.
The funding provided by DHX Media is dedicated to expanding experiential learning opportunities for NSCAD students—namely, internships for upper-year media-arts students in film, animation and intermedia.
In addition, DHX Media will be contributing to the animation lab at NSCAD by funding “industry-relevant software.” Funds will also support the production of live action and animated films by NSCAD students in their final year.
Toronto- and New York–based art advisor Lonti Ebers has joined the recently formed international advisory board for the Bienal de São Paulo, the second-oldest biennial in the world.
Ebers is currently vice-president of the board at New York’s New Museum. She has long been involved with the board at Toronto’s Power Plant; she is a past president of the Power Plant board, and is currently listed as being on the Power Plant’s President’s Council. Ebers holds a master’s degree in the history of art from the University of Toronto.
Ebers is also active as a collector and lender to exhibitions. In 2013, Ebers donated an Alexander McQueen dress to the Royal Ontario Museum’s “BIG” textiles exhibition. She recently lent a work by Simon Denny to the “MashUp” exhibition at the Vancouver Art Gallery. And she has donated at least one language painting by Ken Lum to the University of Toronto art collection.
The stated objective of the Bienal de São Paulo’s international advisory board is “to expand activities and global networks…by including itinerant exhibitions that will visit 15 cities in Brazil and overseas, and by increasing Brazil’s presence at the biennials for art and architecture in Venice.”
Anne-Marie St-Jean Aubre has been appointed to a newly created artistic co-director position at the Darling Foundry in Montreal. She will hold the position in conjunction with Darling Foundry founder and long-time artistic director Caroline Andrieux.
St-Jean Aubre has been a curator at the institution since April 2015, organizing solo exhibitions with André Fortino (2015) and Marie-Michelle Deschamps (2016), as well as the group exhibition “Interprétations à l’œuvre” (2016).
In a release, the Darling Foundry stated, “With an open approach looking at the question of performativity through visual arts, dance, and language, together with an interest in indigenous art and identity issues, Anne-Marie St-Jean Aubre engages with the centre’s programming in discovering these sensibilities, essential for understanding the world we live in with all its nuances and complexities.”
Originally from Gatineau, St-Jean Aubre received a master’s in art history from the Université du Québec à Montréal and has contributed to ESSE, Ciel Variable and Espace. She previously worked as associate curator at SBC Gallery in Montreal.