Art Gallery of Alberta Opens in Canada
After 10 years of planning, an $88 million capital campaign, and three years of construction, the newly remodeled Art Gallery of Alberta has finally opened in the Canadian province.
Originally founded in 1924 as the Edmonton Museum of Arts Association, the international arts museum has been re-imagined by Los Angeles-based architect Randall Stout with a 625-foot-long, 102-foot-high continuous ribbon of stainless steel, inspired by the forms of the North Saskatchewan River and Aurora Borealis.
Inside, Stout covered the 85,000-square-foot museum’s three floors in a palette of patinaed zinc, energy-efficient fritted glass and stainless steel, all specified to embrace and reflect Edmonton’s dramatic weather patterns, and the area’s extreme contrast of long summer days and early winter nights.
Along with its new digs, the museum is unveiling a slew of inaugural exhibitions, including works by Edgar Degas and Francisco Goya, Canadians get their due with shows devoted to artists Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller, and photographers Yousuf Karsh and Edward Burtynsky. The AGA is also playing host to Play on Architecture, a year-long exhibition in the museum’s interactive children’s gallery.
“As we open our doors to our new facility, we embrace a most ambitious agenda,” says Gilles Hébert, the museum’s executive director. “It is an auspicious day for Edmontonians and Albertans as the AGA takes its place amongst great Canadian art museums with enormous enthusiasm and tremendous capacity. We are committed to being leaders in the field and to providing jour visitors with exceptional experiences. And this facility is perfectly suited to the bold future we envision.”
Photos by Robert Lemermeyer, courtesy of The Art Gallery of Alberta.