Philanthropy in Ottawa: RBC supports Canadian artists with National Gallery donation

National Gallery of Canada
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Who: RBC Foundation 

The donation: $900,000

The recipient: National Gallery of Canada Foundation

The impact: “The acquisition of works by Indigenous artists and emerging contemporary artists from diverse communities for the national collection is rooted in the Gallery’s core values of building a collection that inspires human connection and placing Indigenous ways of knowing and being at the centre of our actions.” Sasha Suda, director and CEO, National Gallery of Canada

A recent $900,000 gift from RBC Foundation to the National Gallery of Canada will support three major initiatives that help ensure art is accessible to all Canadians.

The first initiative, which is at the core of RBC’s philanthropic giving, is the RBC Emerging Artists Project. This program helps to advance  artists’ careers at a pivotal time as they work to establish themselves. Since 2015, the RBC Emerging Artists Project has supported more than 28,000 alumni.

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A second area supported by RBC is a National Gallery of Canada initiative called Re-Creation. The Gallery launched Re-Creation in 2019 to tell richer and more truthful art history in its Indigenous and Canadian galleries. 

Through work with Indigenous artists, knowledge keepers, curators, researchers and community members, the Gallery is commissioning and supporting the training of contemporary Indigenous artists to create works that are inspired by historical art forms. The first works to be commissioned through Re-Creation are the regalia and chiefly possessions of artist and hereditary Chief 7idansuu James Hart of the Stastas Eagle Clan.

The third initiative supported by RBC is the sponsorship of The Venice Biennale, a curated contemporary art event, in September 2022. It's the only international visual arts exhibition to which Canada sends official representation and RBC's support will enable Canadian artists to showcase their talents on the world stage.

“RBC is so proud to support the work of Canadian emerging artists by investing in these three National Gallery of Canada programs,” says Marjolaine Hudon, regional president for Ontario North & East at Royal Bank of Canada. ”It’s a way to support artists at a critical point in their career. And more broadly, it helps build vibrant communities and strong economies all across the country.”

Philanthropy in Ottawa is a monthly feature highlighting notable donations in Ottawa. Share your stories of philanthropy in our community with news@obj.ca. And be sure to read the latest edition of OBJ’s Giving Guide: