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  • Photo of Shirley Madill

In the wake of the severe emotional and economic impact of COVID-19 on the arts, the team at KWAG has been reflecting, regrouping and redefining our ties to culture in a post-pandemic world. As we open the door to a new year, I want to share how the Gallery is moving forward.

The challenges of reduced visitor capacity, social distancing in the Gallery, and ensuring staff and public safety revealed how the experience of art has been radically changed. Digital content is now essential for supporting audiences confined to their homes and for reaching those outside our borders. We are finding innovative ways to inspire our communities locally and globally through a hybrid offering of educational and public programs. 

I am optimistic as we journey into a new normal. The time has come to gather together physically and fully return to engaging with artists, friends and supporters in a welcoming and safe space. We begin the year with a new 2022-24 Strategic Plan that outlines our goals and actions for the next three years. In it we continue to build on an inclusive model that places artists and visitors at the heart of our activities. As a team, we believe deeply in the values of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility, and are committed to enacting structural change by turning our beliefs into actions. The Gallery will continue to share the most thought-provoking contemporary art with our communities and I hope you will join us in exploring the art, ideas and issues of our time. 

Happy New Year. I look forward to seeing you at the Gallery.   

Shirley Madill is the Executive Director of the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery

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