Assiniboine Park Conservancy Opens Revitalized Pavilion, Announces Partnership with Winnipeg Art Gallery

For immediate release: Winnipeg, September 28, 2016 – Today, the Assiniboine Park Conservancy (APC) officially re-opened the iconic Pavilion in Assiniboine Park. The historic landmark has been undergoing a series of renovations since early February as part of the overall $200 million redevelopment campaign. The re-opening of the Pavilion also marks the launch of WAG@ThePark, a new partnership between APC and the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) that will see the WAG provide their expertise to curate exhibitions drawn primarily from the APC collection, as well as from the WAG collection. The partnership will enhance community art appreciation and audience access to the work of living and historical Canadian artists. 

“Our partnership with the WAG is a natural fit and we are excited to be working with such a renowned organization to bring art to the community,” said Margaret Redmond, APC President and CEO.  “The Pavilion is literally and figuratively at the heart of Assiniboine Park, and the investment we have made in preserving it reflects our commitment to protecting the Park’s cherished character while continuing to invest in its future.”  

“The relationship between the APC and the WAG has grown from Painting in the Park in the fifties to Inuit art carvings in the Journey to Churchill exhibit,” states Dr. Stephen Borys, WAG Director & CEO. “We are excited to expand our partnership further with WAG@ThePark, allowing us to engage the public with art in an exciting new way.” 

The new exhibits now on display at The Pavilion and curated by the WAG feature early works by Ivan Eyre, watercolours and prints by Walter J. Phillips, and a new exhibition of historical photographs featuring the original Pavilion as well as surrounding spaces in Assiniboine Park. The Pavilion is also home to The Pooh Gallery, a permanent collection of Winnie the Pooh artifacts and memorabilia donated by the MacFarlane family. APC is actively looking for a new restaurant tenant on the main floor to complete the space. Today also marks the unveiling of the Ivan Eyre sculpture Plains Call that has been donated by the artist to the Assiniboine Park Conservancy. Originally sculpted in 2009, the large bronze piece is now located in the shallow garden directly in front of the Pavilion, highlighting the building and welcoming visitors to the area.    
 
History of the Pavilion
The original Pavilion, built in 1908 for just $19,000, was destroyed by fire in 1929. The second Pavilion, which opened in 1930, featured elements of early English architecture, a mock Tudor half-timbering, bell tower, and roof line reminiscent of thatching. Over time, the Pavilion fell into disuse and is remembered primarily as a seasonal facility with a main floor canteen and rental hall on the second level. In October 1998 the Pavilion re-opened after an extensive restoration and today houses the largest collections of works by three renowned Manitoba artists – Ivan Eyre, Walter J. Phillips and Clarence Tillenius - thanks to the diligent work of Partners in the Park, who were the driving force in the creation of the art galleries on the second and third floors of the building.  

About the WAG
Canada’s oldest civic art gallery and Manitoba leading art museum, the Winnipeg Art Gallery is a cultural advocate – a lens and forum – helping people see and experience more through art. Playing a vital role in the community, engaging and enriching people of all ages and backgrounds through art and culture, the WAG thrives as a creative, innovative, and accessible place for learning, discovery, and inspiration. The WAG is home to over 27,000 works spanning centuries and media, including the world’s largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art. To celebrate the art and to honour the Inuit, the WAG is building an Inuit Art Centre, the first of its kind. The Centre will bridge Canada’s North and South through exhibitions, research, education, and art making.

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For interviews and information requests, please contact:
Laura Curtis, APC Manager, Marketing & Communications
204-793-4316, lcurtis@assiniboinepark.ca  

Catherine Maksymiuk, WAG Manager, Media & Marketing
204.789.1767, Media-Manager@wag.ca

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