$5-million Gift to Create “Major Arts Centre” at UBC
Topic : Education News
Arts philanthropist (how does one become an arts philanthropist? It sounds like something fun to pursue) Michael Audain has, through his family foundation, given aÂ $5-million gift towards the creation of aÂ major new centre for the visual arts at the University of British Columbia.
The facility, which quite rightly will be called the Audain Art Centre, will house UBC’sÂ DepartementÂ of Art History, Visual Art and Theory, which has helped establish some of the country’s best known visual artists,Â including Jeff Wall, Ken Lum and Ian Wallace.
âSince the launch of its program in 1955, UBC has played a major role in putting Vancouver on the world map for visual arts,â Audain said in a press release.
Audain also recently donated $1.2 millionÂ to UBCâs Museum of Anthropology, which combined with the new arts centre “gift” brings the total amount of hisÂ donations to UBC to over $10 million. Talk about having a good friend!
Â âUBC played a vital role in my education over 50 years ago.Â This splendid new centre is an opportunity for me to recognize that, while providing a better learning environment for the next generation of art students,â he said.
The 2,600 square-metreÂ Audain Art Centre will replace the existing aging facilities. It will span four storeys in Ponderosa Commons, and will include:
- A new student housing and academic facility
- A 230 square-metre, street-levelÂ arts gallery
- 16 professional artists studios
- Digital arts, new media and animation labs
- Print media library
- A research center
- Academic space for 500 students, staff and faculty
âThis facility will help to attract the best students and faculty and transform visual arts teaching and learning at UBC,â Gage Averill, dean of UBCâs Faculty of Arts, said (it’s a miracle he can speak with that massive smile on his face).Â âThe Audain Art Centre will guarantee that generations of creative arts students will have the kind of leading-edge and inspirational facilities that can nurture their visual imaginations and deepen their education,â he said.
If you’re keeping score, Audain has now donated $35 million to Canadian arts organizations. Good man!
What do you think about this?