Thanks to a hefty donation, Calgary’s Glenbow Museum will offer free general admission permanently.
Julie Shaw, the president of the Shaw Family Foundation, announced the $25-million JR Shaw Free Admissions Endowment in February.
The donation is intended to honour the legacy of her father, JR Shaw, who founded Shaw Communications and Corus Entertainment — and loved art, Julie said.
“We are very, very proud to make a donation that honours JR the best way we know how — by building upon his passion for Canadian art and artists and passing it along for future generations to enjoy without any barriers,” she said.
“We can make this Calgary institution, and all that it has to offer, accessible to everyone — without the restriction of having to pay to enter the building.”
The Shaw family’s donation will also fund a $10-million endowment to create the JR Shaw Institute for Canadian Art.
The museum says it will feature annual exhibitions, diverse programs, an artist-in-residence program and an internship and fellowship program.
“In Calgary, access to arts and culture will no longer be a privilege. It will be a right,” said Glenbow CEO Nicholas R. Bell.
The museum, which opened in 1966, is closed and undergoing a renovation called Glenbow Reimagined.
So far, the museum has raised $152 million in
public and private support for the project — but
its campaign goal has ballooned to $175 million.
The Glenbow is expected to reopen in 2024.