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Plans Established for New Art Centre in Yellowknife

A new art gallery is on its way to Yellowknife.

On October 27th, the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Northwest Territories Art Gallery voted to proceed to the planning phase for a new non-commercial art gallery and visual-art-focussed community centre in Yellowknife. The decision came after consideration of a feasibility study completed recently by Lord Cultural Resources, an arts sector consultancy headquartered in Toronto. The study’s main objectives were to evaluate demand and make recommendations for the operational sustainability of a potential new arts facility.

The proposed building would be approximately 29,000 square feet in size, and would allow for the building and proper care of a world-class art collection. The facility would also regularly exchange pieces of art with similar locations. The new facility, which is currently being referred to as the NWT Arts Centre in Yellowknife, would have two main objectives:

1. To celebrate the creativity of the people of the Northwest Territories by providing opportunities for making, sharing and learning about art and craft where they live and throughout the circumpolar world.

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2. To meet the needs of existing, emerging and future visual artists in the NWT to display their works of art, craft and design in a professionally curated and operated facility.

At the October 27th board meeting, the founding President of Friends of the NWT Art Gallery, Adrian Bell, stepped down from the position to assume the role of Director of Business Development. “We’ll be moving forward with next steps right away,” said Bell. “We’re fortunate to have the support of a private foundation, which has allowed us to get this far. Now we’ll begin discussions with other potential funding partners, engaging with the local and territorial governments, identifying and evaluating potential building sites and programming opportunities, and continue our outreach with the arts community and other key parties to chart a path forward.”

Toby Kruger, the newly elected board President, said that he believes the NWT would clearly benefit from a new visual arts centre.

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