About

History

History

Contemporary Calgary launched in 2014, the combined forces of The Art Gallery of Calgary and MOCA Calgary.

The AGC was originally known as the Muttart Public Art Gallery. Founded in 1977, when 14 artist associations representing over 500 local artists worked with the Calgary Public Library to open a gallery in the Memorial Park Library.  The renovations were funded by the Gladys and Merrill Muttart Foundation.

Over the next 20 years, the Muttart gained a national profile as a leading Western Canadian public art gallery. The Muttart was also renowned for its innovative art education programs.

In 2000, the Muttart built on these successes by moving to two historic buildings in the heart of Calgary’s downtown on Stephen Avenue Walk, where the organization adopted the name: The Art Gallery of Calgary.

Today, as Contemporary Calgary, we combine the strong grassroots foundation of MOCA and The Art Gallery of Calgary with curatorial expertise to showcase contemporary art to Calgarians and guests.

Contemporary Calgary is a public contemporary art gallery and a registered charitable organization. Contemporary Calgary is dedicated to presenting contemporary art exhibitions and providing quality art education programs and experiences for people of all ages. Contemporary Calgary does not seek to acquire a permanent art collection nor is it in the business of selling art.

Contemporary Calgary has invested in strict environmental controls and renovations that allow it to host museum-quality contemporary art exhibitions from around the world that have not been available in Calgary in the past. With the installation of strict environmental controls, Contemporary Calgary is now the only non-collecting contemporary art facility, and one of only three galleries in Calgary, with the capacity to display art requiring this level of protection.

With more than 6,000 square feet, Contemporary Calgary is a perfect space to display contemporary art for the community.

Education is a key part of Contemporary Calgary’s strategy. Contemporary Calgary provides a wealth of knowledge and experience to help people understand the art on display. Contemporary Calgary offers hands-on, curriculum-based art education programs for school groups from Kindergarten to Grade 12. Contemporary Calgary’s education and public programs provide students with an opportunity to discover contemporary art, interact with contemporary artists, and express themselves through art. Contemporary Calgary’s public programs are an exciting way for all Calgarians to be on the cutting-edge of what’s happening in today’s art world. You can meet the people behind the art through artists’ talks and gallery tours.

As a non-collecting, non-profit, public contemporary art gallery, our entire focus is helping people discover contemporary art, not generating a profit through art sales.