Last updated on April 21, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

The National Gallery of Canada Foundation hosts its second annual distinguished Patrons Soiree in conjunction with the Van Gogh: Up Close exhibition

May 22, 2012

OTTAWA, May 22, 2012 /CNW/ – Leading supporters of the National Gallery
of Canada will convene Wednesday evening, May 23, for the second annual
Distinguished Patrons Soirée, to mark the opening the next day of Van Gogh: Up Close, a major exhibition of over 40 works by the famous Dutch artist.

“It is a privilege to welcome this extraordinary group of generous,
public-spirited individuals who believe deeply in the mission of the
National Gallery of Canada, and its goal of ensuring that Canadians
across the country can discover and enjoy outstanding works of visual
art,” said Thomas d’Aquino, Chair of the National Gallery of Canada
Foundation.  (Distinguished Patrons are listed in the annex to this
news release.)

The Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, Chief Justice of Canada, is the
Patron of this year’s Soirée. It will bring together 100 patrons and
special guests from the worlds of business, government, and the arts,
as well as the ambassadors of the ten countries which have loaned works
to the Van Gogh exhibition:  Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain,
Japan, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United

One of these, Ambassador Wim Geerts of the Netherlands, will mark the
occasion by donating to the Gallery a new six-volume edition of Van
Gogh’s letters prepared by the Van Gogh Museum and the Huygens
Institute (Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences).

Van Gogh: Up Close is under the patronage of Her Majesty, Queen Beatrix of the
Netherlands, and His Excellency, the Right Honourable David Johnston,
Governor General of Canada.  The exhibition is organized in partnership
with the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Presenting Sponsor is Sun
Life Financial.

In June 2011, Distinguished Patrons convened in Ottawa on the eve of the
launch of the major exhibition Caravaggio and His Followers in Rome, an event that was followed by a Visual Arts Symposium.

The Distinguished Patrons of the National Gallery of Canada provide
financial support for the Gallery’s touring art exhibition program, the
largest of its kind in the world.  As well, from time to time, Patrons
help the Gallery acquire major works of art.  One such example is
Canadian artist Joe Fafard’s sculpture Running Horses.  Having toured Canada, the horses now make a dramatic and much-loved
statement in front of the Gallery.

“Our readiness to support the Gallery as Distinguished Patrons is tied
to the superb quality of the team of professionals at the Gallery under
the leadership of Director Marc Mayer,” said Mr. d’Aquino.  He added, 
“It is further enhanced by the majesty of the Gallery itself which we
regard as one of our country’s greatest cultural treasures, and a
global centre of excellence of which Canadians can be proud.”

The National Gallery of Canada Foundation which is responsible for the
activities of Distinguished Patrons works closely with the Gallery’s
Board of Trustees.  Board of Trustees Chair and Foundation member,
Michael Audain said, “The Gallery benefits greatly from the
contribution of volunteers from across Canada who recognize the
importance of the arts to the national life of our country.  The close
cooperation between the Gallery Board and Foundation and the Gallery’s
Director and his team ensure that the work of our volunteers is

Following this year’s Soirée, Distinguished Patrons will reconvene on
the morning of May 24 for an in-depth briefing on Van Gogh: Up Close by exhibition Co-Curators, Dr. Cornelia Homburg and Dr. Anabelle Kienle

About the National Gallery of Canadian Foundation
The National Gallery of Canada Foundation is a philanthropic
organization composed of a volunteer Board of Directors and supporters
from across Canada and dedicated to ensuring the long-term viability
and success of the National Gallery of Canada.  Its primary mission is
to cultivate support, to raise capital and to maintain and manage an
endowment for the benefit of the National Gallery.  Its offices are
located at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa. For more
information, visit http://www.ngcfoundation.ca/.

About the National Gallery of Canada
The National Gallery of Canada is home to the most important collections
of historical and contemporary Canadian art, including the extensive
collection of the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography. The
Gallery also maintains Canada’s premier collection of European Art from
the 14(th) to the 21(st) century, as well as important works of American, Asian and Indigenous
Art and renowned international collections of prints, drawings and
photographs. Created in 1880, the National Gallery of Canada has played
a key role in Canadian culture for well over a century. Among its
principal missions is to increase access to excellent works of art for
all Canadians. To do so, it maintains the largest touring art
exhibition programme in the world. For more information: www.gallery.ca

                                         Distinguished Patrons

         David Aisenstat (Vancouver)     Ronald and Nancy Mannix (Calgary)

    Michael Audain and Yoshiko           Ronald and Tara Mathison (Calgary)
    Karasawa (Vancouver)

          Sam and Frances Belzberg          The Honourable Margaret McCain

        Laurent and Claire Beaudoin          and the late Wallace McCain
                 (Montreal)                           (Toronto)

          David Broadhurst (Toronto)           Michael and Inna O'Brian

    Peter and Joanne Brown (Vancouver)       J. Robert and Myriam Ouimet

    Thomas and Susan d'Aquino (Ottawa)   Peter and Susan Restler (New York)

         André and France Desmarais        Hartley and Heather Richardson
                  (Montreal)                          (Winnipeg)

          Paul and Hélène Desmarais            Nancy Richardson (Ottawa)

         Murray and Heather Edwards         John and Judi Risley (Halifax)

        Bruce Flatt and Lonti Ebers      Joseph and Sandra Rotman (Toronto)

    James and Margaret Fleck (Toronto)           Eric Savics (Vancouver)

        Fred and Elizabeth Fountain      Richard and Nancy Self (Vancouver)

         Blake and Belinda Goldring           Donald and Elizabeth Sobey
                  (Toronto)                           (Stellarton)

           Reesa Greenberg (Ottawa)         Jozef and Vera Straus (Ottawa)

        Paul and Carol Hill (Regina)         Bill and Jean Teron (Ottawa)

       Stephen and Gail Jarislowsky       Michael and Renae Tims (Calgary)

       John and Judy Kerr (Vancouver)          William and Nancy Turner

      Hassan and Nezhat Khosrowshahi     Sara Vered and the late Zeev Vered
                (Vancouver)                           (Ottawa)

    George and Karen Killy (Vancouver)   Peeter and Mary Wesik (Vancouver)

                                              Anonymous (London, England)

SOURCE National Gallery of Canada

Source: PR Newswire