Big Ideas for the VAG

The Quadrisect


Michael Green VAG

This unsolicited proposal by Michael Green Architecture splits the money between a renovation for the existing Art Gallery, and developing three satellite downtown galleries linked by “art walks.” Site one: the “Char Gallery” housing the Historical Canadian Collection in a modernized Gastown space. Site two: the contemporary “Truss Gallery” on a pedestrian walkway running underneath the Granville Street Bridge. Third: the “Blowdown Gallery” featuring sculpture and photography deep beneath the East Lawn in Stanley Park.


The Multiplex


James Todd VAG 

Another unsolicited vision by James Todd and Tony Osborn Architecture removes the traffic loops at the end of the Granville Street Bridge and lays down a “Welcome Mat” encompassing a 3.5-acre space from Howe to Seymour, and Pacific to Rolston. More than just a museum, this new space (“The Mat”) would act as a social and artistic entrance to Downtown Vancouver from the Granville Street Bridge including a bike share hub, theatres, classrooms, cafes, and-oh right-public art and galleries.


The Big Idea


Bob Rennie VAG 

In stark contrast with Bartels vision of a “single star” mega-gallery, Bob Rennie and David Baxter envision a 15-year, $125 million plan to transform the VAG into the epicenter of a seven-gallery “constellation.” In their proposal, the Offsite exhibition site at the Shangri-La would remain unchanged, and a renovation at the existing VAG would host a gallery of conceptual photography and the Canadian Historical Collection. The plan’s big build would be a third 50,000 square-foot “Temporary to Contemporary” gallery on the hot property of Larwill Park. Lastly, Rennie and Baxter envision four 12,000 square-foot community “Arts Places” housing First Nations Contemporary, Asian/East Asian, Graphics and Design, and Religious/Spiritual art dispersed throughout Vancouver’s neighbourhoods. No eye-catching renderings exist for “The $150 Million Solution” yet. As Rennie told us, “I don’t hire architects.” (PDF)


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