The woman whose name is on the Remai Modern art gallery has stepped up for the museum once again.
With this weekend’s grand opening approaching, the gallery announced Thursday night that Ellen Remai had agreed to donate as much as $50 million through her foundation.
The massive gift from the Frank and Ellen Remai Foundation will come in two parts.
First, the foundation will give $1 million each year for 25 years to support art purchases for the gallery.
Second, the foundation will match eligible donations to the museum up to a maximum of an additional $1 million per year for the next 25 years. Those donations will be earmarked for art purchases and programs.
The new money brings the foundation’s total donations to the gallery to $103 million.
Previously, it donated $16 million for construction, $15 million for international programming, $2 million for acquisitions and $20 million to secure a collection of Picasso linocut prints.
“What makes her gifts over the past several years even more incredible is that beyond the major support of construction, she had the foresight to provide Remai Modern a guaranteed income to support programming and acquisitions over the next 25 or more years,” gallery executive director and CEO Gregory Burke said in a news release.
Ellen Remai first announced that her foundation would donate $31 million towards the gallery in 2011. Saskatoon City Council voted unanimously in 2012 to name the gallery after her.
People will be able to tour the new gallery free-of-charge on Saturday, Oct. 21, and Sunday, Oct. 22, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The free days are presented by KPMG and Rawlco Radio.