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Victoria artist donates $2.5 million to art gallery

Anthony Thorn wants to give Art Gallery of Greater Victoria boost for renovation plans
Victoria-based artist Anthony Thorn poses with one of his paintings. On Monday

A Oak Bay-based artist is donating $2.5 million to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria to spur on the gallery’s renovation.

Anthony Thorn, an accomplished Canadian artist best known for using precious metals to create paintings and carvings, was inspired to donate after reading a Victoria News article on the gallery’s decision to redevelop its Moss Street facility rather than move downtown.

“This is the biggest contribution to cultural infrastructure in Victoria in many years,” said Jon Tupper, gallery director, adding the cash donation is the largest ever to the gallery.

The gallery plans to roll out a formal fundraising campaign for the redevelopment in the coming months, said Ruth Wittenberg, board chair. “This gift allows us to move forward with confidence,” she said. “We are extremely grateful to Anthony for his support.”

Thorn’s works are part of corporate and public collections across Canada, including at the AGGV and Greater Victoria Public Library.

Thorn was too unwell to attend Monday’s announcement, but in a release said the donation is also in memory of his late wife, Jacqueline Goldman.