Canada's Art Bank celebrates 30 years

06 February 2002, Canada

The Canada Council's Art Bank, which rents contemporary Canadian art to government and private sector organisations nationwide, is celebrating its 30th anniversary of operation this year. Created in 1972 with a mandate to develop holdings of local visual art, the Bank now sports the world's largest collection of contemporary Canadian art, at some 18,000 items. The Canada Council estimates that works from the collection would have been seen by thousands of Canadians during its history, in embassies worldwide, in airport transit terminals and even in the current CTV series The Associates. 'The concept of the Art Bank is as valid today as it was 30 years ago,' commented Art Bank Director Victoria Henry, 'There have been changes over the years, but our mandate is still the same: to support and promote Canadian artists by making their works accessible in offices and public spaces across Canada.' Art Bank's anniversary activities will commence on 12 February, with a Mardi Gras Carnival at its Ottawa headquarters. Further information regarding Art Bank, along with a virtual tour, is available online at: