The new digs for the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia to be built on the Halifax Waterfront came into sharper focus on Monday with the unveiling of three proposed designs.
After a six-month international competition, the public will have a chance to look over the three finalists and send their feedback to the province until late October. The designs will be displayed with 3D models, graphics and detailed submissions by the design teams.
The three finalists are Architecture49 with Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Hargreaves Jones; DIALOG, Acre Architects, Brackish Design Studio and Shannon Webb-Campbell; KPMB Architects with Omar Gandhi Architect, Jordan Bennett Studio, Elder Lorraine Whitman (NWAC), Public Work and Transsolar.
The winning design will be chosen in October by a jury of professionals and will be followed by another public engagement process.
Once the new gallery is completed, the AGNS will begin the process of moving its permanent collection of more than 17,000 works. One of its best-known exhibits, the painted house that belonged to Nova Scotia folk art icon Maud Lewis, will also be disassembled and moved to its new home.
The new facility was announced in April 2019 to take over from the gallery's current home in Halifax’s historic Dominion Building, where it has resided since 1988, and the government building next door which allowed for further expansion a decade later.
The new building will feature bigger spaces for larger exhibits and an expanded collection, factors which were limited by the size and ceiling height restrictions of the older buildings.
Funding from the provincial government is pegged at $70 million, with a federal government pledge of $30 million. The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia also launched a capital campaign to raise an additional $30 million.