The art of philanthropy
The Dalhousie Difference
Marie Weeren - July 4, 2012
Earlier this year, Canadian contemporary artist Garry Neill Kennedy’s made a gift of his work to the Dalhousie Art Gallery, a donation that will capture the attention and imagination of visitors for generations to come.
His donation, comprised of two pieces—a group of four untitled paintings from 1975 and a series called “Six Pink Paintings” from 1994 (see image of Dermatitis below)—represents the highest-value single donation the gallery has ever received.
Read also: Dalhousie Art Gallery tickled pink about new donation
Mr. Kennedy, speaking about the gift, says the fact that he had no work in Dal’s permanent collection was something he wanted to address.
“The Dal permanent collection is quite good and I like my work to be in good company,” he says. “My gift is complementary to the works in the Dal collection of, say, Gerald Ferguson who, like me, comes from the minimalist conceptual tradition of the 60s.”
Mr. Kennedy, who served as president of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design for more than 20 years, was instrumental in bringing the conceptual art movement to Halifax. He is a member of the Order of Canada and was presented with a Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts. His book, The Last Art College: Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, 1968-1978, was recently published by The MIT Press.
He also knows the art will be in good hands.
“When making a gift I think about how secure the work will be. How well it will be taken care of over the long haul. My work, even the collectible work, is very fragile and would not survive the environmental conditions of most galleries or most homes. At the Dalhousie Art Gallery it’s a pretty safe bet that it will be around for a while.”
Much to the delight of current and future art enthusiasts.
This article is part of the Dalhousie Difference series, exploring what the power of philantrophy means to the university and introducing and showcasing some of the 50 innovative projects in development. Learn more at boldambitions.dal.ca.
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