The Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery is located in downtown Montreal on the campus of Concordia University, one of Quebec’s most culturally diverse and accessible universities.
The Gallery’s programme of exhibitions, events, activities and publications focuses on artmaking today and on its recent history as it interfaces with various curatorial strategies. Its program responds to the communities, issues, tensions, projections, and changes that shape the society we live in within a framework of inclusivity and equity. Artmaking and curating are seen to be at the crossroads of disciplines and as sites to engage in free critical thinking.
Three major projects in the form of exhibitions or performative events are presented between September and April. At times, one-off events of short duration take place between the larger projects. In the spring of each year, the work of students in Concordia’s graduate visual arts programs is featured in Ignition.
All projects are the result of a specific curatorial approach. Public programs are an inherent part of projects but also can revolve around non exhibition-based issues. Collaborators from various disciplines and fields of interests participate in our projects and activities.
The Gallery houses a collection of Canadian and Québécois art, which from time to time is the subject of critical examination in exhibitions that explore collecting, storing and interpretive issues.
The Gallery does not proceed by open calls. Rather, it solicits proposals for exhibitions and projects directly from various curators and artists or chooses existing curatorial projects to be reformulated to respond to our context and the one of the communities it serves.
Artists or curators can send us visual or written material to keep us informed of their practice and recent projects. If sent via the post and the material is to be returned, the sender must include a self-addressed envelope with appropriate postage.
Founded in 1966, the Sir George Williams Art Galleries were renamed Concordia Art Gallery in 1984. In 1992, the Gallery was relocated in the newly constructed library complex and inaugurated as the Leonard and Bina Ellen Art Gallery in honour of important benefactors to the University.
The Gallery is part of the Office of the Vice-President, Research and Graduate Studies of Concordia University. It is supported by Advisory Council composed of members of the University and of the external community. Its basic operating is provided by the University and its programming is funded by the Canada Council for the Arts and a few endowment funds. It also periodically receives funding from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, Heritage Canada as well as from foundations and cultural affairs departments of embassies.
The Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery at Concordia University is committed to researching, exhibiting, documenting and disseminating contemporary art in a local, national and international context. Through its exhibitions, its educational and public programs and its publications, the Gallery promotes a greater awareness of art as a critical form of knowledge and as a way to engage in larger cultural debates to the general public, art communities and to students and young adults. The Gallery collects Canadian art.