An art gallery will open in Yellowknife on September 2, promising to feature different artists from the area each week.
Colin Dempsey, a business administration professor at Aurora College with a long history in the Yellowknife art scene, will open The Gallery on the 47th with his wife Ainsley on September 2nd.
A few years ago, Dempsey ran a gallery in a neighboring building. The new gallery in the space vacated by the Mermaid and Moon boutique will occupy a larger space.
Dempsey said he and his wife felt ready to run a gallery again.
“It’s strange to think of a gallery as infrastructure, but it is,” he said.
“As an artist advances in their career, they need a solo exhibition.
“This is a big step forward in terms of access to grants, entry into larger galleries and participation in national exhibitions. All of these things start with a solo show.”
To have this kind of show, Dempsey says, artists need a showroom set up for the purpose and willing to clear out its inventory periodically to highlight one artist at a time.
“By providing the facility, the potential of the local arts community is actually enhanced because people are suddenly able to get these important solo shows,” he said.
The Yellowknife arts community has regularly addressed the lack of a territorial gallery as a critical gap in the NWT’s offering for visual artists.
Most recently, a trailer that doubles as a mobile art space has played a tongue-in-cheek role as an unofficial territorial gallery.
The Gallery on 47th opens September 2 at Yellowknife’s 47 Street with a collection of existing holdings at a reduced price.
From there, the focus of the gallery changes weekly. Artists include Carey Bray, Aidan Cartwright and the opening of the 2022 Cape Dorset Print Collection, an annual print collection featuring Inuit art.
For the full fall program, visit the gallery’s Facebook page.