As Executive Director, it is my pleasure to report on the many accomplishments of the St. Thomas–Elgin Public Art Centre in 2010. Guided by our five-year strategic plan, the Art Centre’s talented staff and dedicated Board worked towards realizing our vision of creating life-long engagements between people and art.
The four goals of Art Centre Forward are:
- Increase awareness and visibility of the art centre in the St. Thomas, Elgin County community and its tourists.
- Build on the Art Centre’s excellent reputation in exhibitions and programs, and further enhance the quality of these areas, to extend the art centre regional, national and international reach.
- Deepen, diversify and expand relationships and audiences within St. Thomas, Elgin and surrounding area.
- Collection maintenance and growth, building care and management to high gallery standards.
While the strategic plan set the course for the art centre for the last five years, this Annual Report reviews our progress over the past fiscal year. As you will read, we have made great strides forward despite numerous challenges.
In terms of responsiveness, the Art Centre provided relevant programming to diverse audiences with our in-house and incoming exhibitions, public and educational tours, adult and children’s classes, artist talks and public openings. Exhibition highlights included Al Sugerman and Robin Masse photographic exhibition that took place January 9 to March 6, 2010. Enthralling exhibitions by local artists such as Ron Kingswood and Mary Louise White were extremely popular.
Our collection grew with many new additions in 2010. Included this year were works by regional artist Greg Curnoe, local artist David Morris and Walter Redinger.
In the past year the Art Centre continued to nurture its relationships with the communities it serves by creating opportunities for all the people of St. Thomas and Elgin County to experience art first-hand. With the support of Crayola Canada, we were able to offer exciting hands-on art making experiences at the International Plowing Match.
For the past 42 years, our Great Beginnings – Elementary / Secondary exhibition has created a wonderful partnership with the Thames Valley District School Board and the Catholic School Board, working closely with teachers and educators. Talking with parents, students and teachers at the opening was one of the highlights of past year for me. The exhibition was truly a testament to the profound effect the arts have on young people in our community.
In closing, I must thank the Board of Directors for their support and guidance during my third year with the Art Centre. I also offer my thanks to each member of our talented staff—it is a privilege to work with such dedicated professionals. As the Art Centre moves towards its vision of being an essential part of its community, we are grateful for the support of our volunteers, members, donors, and funders. Thank you all for making the past year so successful!
Our achievements would not be possible without the generous support we receive from the County of Elgin and the City of St. Thomas. Thank you!
Laura Woermke ~ Executive Director