After 10 years of calling the Steamship Terminal home, the Bateman Gallery is moving.
The gallery will temporarily close its doors mid-February while seeking a permanent location that will increase the accessibility of its programs, care for its extensive collections, and “inspire thousands of global visitors,” said Sarah Theophilus, executive director of the Bateman Foundation, in a statement.
Bateman Gallery hosts the largest collection of original and rare works by world-renowned artist and naturalist Robert Bateman, along with a rotation of nature-inspired exhibits and a full schedule of educational and public programs. The new location will remain true to Bateman’s values, “integrating art, nature, and education in a meaningful and impactful way,” said Theophilus.
While searching for that dream location, the foundation is working with the City of Victoria and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure on approving a temporary space swap with the Maritime Museum of B.C. at 774 Douglas St. This plan is “enthusiastically” supported by the museum, which has an active proposal to permanently move into the Steamship Terminal, said their president of the board of directors, Jamie Webb.
The Bateman Foundation’s vision for the new space is community-focused and will host interactive art and a nature centre, Theophilus added.
Currently, the foundation reaches more than 300,000 people across North America, educates more than 4,000 people through the flagship education program NatureSketch, and welcomes more than 15,000 visitors to the gallery. David Schneider, chair of the board for the Bateman Foundation, hopes this public support will only grow as they approach their 10th anniversary.
The Bateman Gallery will end the two exhibitions: The World of Robert Bateman and Robert Bateman: Heart & Home in mid-February as the foundation prepares to organize and protect the collection of artwork. Education and NatureSketch programs will continue running in partnership with other cultural organizations.
To learn more about the Bateman Foundation, go to batemanfoundation.org.
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