Vancouver Art Gallery’s New Building to be Named Chan Centre for the Visual Arts Thanks to $40 Million Gift

Comments 1 by Rebecca Bollwitt

It’s an exciting day for Vancouver’s arts and culture community. This morning the Vancouver Art Gallery celebrated a major milestone toward the realization of a transformational new building with the announcement of a $40 million lead gift from the Chan Family. This unprecedented act of generosity by the Chan Family brings the Gallery’s capital campaign to $85 million in private sector funding toward the new purpose-built facility. In recognition of this extraordinary gift, the Vancouver Art Gallery’s new building will be named Chan Centre for the Visual Arts.

New Vancouver Art Gallery
Rendering of the new Chan Centre for the Visual Arts

“This is a historic time for the Vancouver Art Gallery in its 88th year! We are all inspired by the Chan Family’s extraordinary generosity, and their philanthropic passion for enriching our community,” said Kathleen S. Bartels, Director of the Vancouver Art Gallery. “With this unprecedented gift to the Vancouver Art Gallery, the Chans are demonstrating a profound investment in the future of this city and country, and one that will impact many generations to come.”

The gift from the Chan Family —the largest-ever single private donation to an arts and culture organization in British Columbia—builds on the Family’s long-standing history of supporting education as well as arts and culture institutions and programs with the aim of enriching communities in Canada and beyond.

Celebrating Other Significant Donations

Along with the Chan Family’s lead gift to name the new building, the Vancouver Art Gallery is also celebrating $45 million in other private sector support that has been made over the last several years, including significant contributions driven by the Gallery’s Board of Trustees. In particular, the generosity of fourteen individuals, families, foundations, and corporate supporters, who have contributed $1 million or more each demonstrating a wide range of support for this important project and a recognition of the incredible benefits it will bring to the entire community including tourism and as a significant economic driver.

Final New Vancouver Art Gallery Building Designs Unveiled

New Vancouver Art Gallery
Rendering of the new Chan Centre for the Visual Arts

The Vancouver Art Gallery is also thrilled to unveil the final designs for its 300,000-square-foot building by world-renowned, Swiss-based architectural firm Herzog & de Meuron.

Designed to serve the Gallery’s expanding collection and to present outstanding art and educational programs for its expanding audiences, the new Vancouver Art Gallery will provide a global platform for Vancouver’s and Canada’s thriving arts scene and play a vital role in establishing this city as one of the world’s foremost cities for arts and culture. Situated at Larwill Park, unifying the crossroads of Downtown, Yaletown, Gastown, east Vancouver and Chinatown, the new Gallery will fuel a hub of creative and cultural activity for local members, the public and international visitors of all ages.

New Vancouver Art Gallery
Rendering of the new Chan Centre for the Visual Arts

Herzog & de Meuron have designed the Vancouver Art Gallery’s new museum as a sculptural, symmetrical, upright building combining opaque and transparent surfaces, with larger volumes concentrated at the top and minimal mass at the bottom. By lifting the bulk of the structure high above the street, the design allows light and air to filter down to an active, open-air courtyard below.

With a generous designation of the land at Larwill Park from the City of Vancouver in place and $135 million in total private and public sector funding secured, including an initial investment of $50 million from the Province of British Columbia, the next step for the Vancouver Art Gallery Capital Campaign will be to continue its work with senior levels of government and the private sector to secure the additional funding needed to begin construction.

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  1. T. BurdWednesday, January 30th, 2019 — 12:45am PST

    Such an amazing donation, and the building design is stunning. It’s been so frustrating to miss out on so many wonderful shows that for decades, have gone instead to Seattle and/or Victoria. Once this is finally built, hopefully Vancouver will finally be included in more touring art exhibits.

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