Sir Max Aitken (Lord Beaverbrook) began planning the construction of an art gallery in New Brunswick early in the twentieth century. After considering a number of locations, Lord Beaverbrook settled upon the city of Fredericton. The Beaverbrook Art Gallery was gifted to the people of New Brunswick by Lord Beaverbrook and officially opened to the public on September 16, 1959. It was designated as the Provincial Art Gallery on December 2, 1994. In October of 1983, the East Wing was added and in May, 1995 the Marion McCain Atlantic Gallery was opened to the public. In 1999 the Beaverbrook Art Gallery celebrated its 40th anniversary.
The Beaverbrook Art Gallery’s permanent collection was established in 1959 with Lord Beaverbrook’s initial gifts that included the donation of valuable British and Canadian works of art, among them paintings by eighteenth-century British masters such as Reynolds and Gainsborough and popular Canadian artists such as Cornelius Krieghoff and members of the Group of Seven.
The Beaverbrook Art Gallery brings art and community together in a dynamic cultural environment dedicated to the highest standards in exhibitions, programming, education and stewardship.
- As the provincial art gallery of New Brunswick, the Beaverbrook Art Gallery will:
- Embrace and advance the province’s two official language communities, its First Nations Peoples and its diverse social, economic and cultural fabric;
- Maintain artistic excellence in the care, research and development of the Gallery’s widely recognized collections;
- Present engaging and stimulating exhibitions and programs to encourage full appreciation of the visual arts;
- Partner to meet its goals, with the governments of New Brunswick and Canada, the general public, the private sector, cultural and educational institutions, artists and other members of the artistic community.
- Conduct its stewardship of the affairs of the Gallery in a financially sustainable manner;
- Serve as an advocate for the arts and promote art education and visual literacy;
- Inspire cultural self-esteem and enjoyment for all New Brunswickers.
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