Art Gallery of Northumberland: A New Era

Following an intense four week renovation, on November 12th the Art Gallery of Northumberland launched a new period in its sixty year long history of bringing art to the community. In celebration of the laying of a new hardwood floor supplied by Sine’s Flooring and funded by local philanthropy in combination with a Trillium Fund grant. The assembled dignitaries were delighted to learn from Executive Director, Olinda Casimiro, of the board’s vision for the future of the gallery.

“We collect, preserve, present, and interpret works of art. We ignite the power of art, embrace our responsibility to engage and educate our community, contribute to cultural knowledge, and advance creative endeavour. We welcome you to a space where ideas take shape, and where art is for everyone.”

Short speeches by Michael Maynard, president of the board, Shawn Graham, representing the Honourable David Piccini, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, and Cobourg Councillor Adam Bureau, preceded the inaugural showing of video made by the gallery exploring its aspirations. Guests were served delectable nibbles by Prep Food Co.

Artists Amy Shackleton and Julian Brown were invited to make a few remarks about their collaborative endeavour, a mural with an added online dimension, following which Olinda Casimiro encouraged the assembly to abandon the comfort of the gallery for a two minute stroll down a rather blustery King Street to the mural’s location at junction of King Street West and Division Street. Entitled ‘Growing Wild,’ the mural came into being not just because of the partnership between Amy and Julian, but also because of the partnership between the Town of Cobourg, the AGN, the Downtown Business Improvement Area and Lakeshore Utility Services.


The work reflects upon our world’s uncertain future. She says, “Inspired by the urgency of climate change…forests are burning, lands are flooding, glaciers are melting. As extreme weather events become more frequent and hit closer to home…(my)…paintings are becoming less about the future and more about the present.”


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