The ACT Arts Centre, open since 2003, provides excellence in Arts Programs, Gallery Exhibitions and Performing Arts Presentations, along with being home to many cultural and community events, reaching over 70,000 patrons annually! The award winning ACT Presents Season offers around 30 performances a year attracting close to 10,000 patrons annually, while the ACT Art Gallery sees over 7,000 guests. Our Arts Programs register approximately 2,500 participants annually, and offer programs in Maple Ridge. See Annual Reports for yearly statistics.
The ACT Arts Centre is managed by the Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows Arts Council through an operation agreement with the City of Maple Ridge, and owned by the City of Maple Ridge. Firmly established as the primary arts programmer of the region, we receive educational and performing arts presentation funding from both the provincial and federal governments – see funding partners. The Arts Council is a non-profit society governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, with professional management and staff, supported by a dedicated core of volunteers. As a community and member centered organization, we act as an arts resource and forum for arts engagement; deliver numerous member services and benefits; produce many community initiatives or events and provide access programs such as: Arts Angels Tickets and Arts Program Bursaries, School Access Programs, Scholarships and Member Group Grants.
We are a not-for-profit registered charity (CRA 107663312 RT0001).
Our aim is to offer vibrant arts and cultural opportunities and experiences through excellence in artistic and educational programming, customer, member and community service. Dedicated to promoting and encouraging appreciation for the arts in society, we engage and enable the community’s creative potential while creating public impact and value through the following Vision, Mission, Values and Programming Mandate:
To bring arts to the heart of our community.
We work in partnership with the community to develop, promote and celebrate the arts.
Leadership, Collaboration, Integrity, Diversity, Accessibility, Innovation, Enjoyment
- to present high quality exhibitions and performances featuring primarily Canadian artists.
- to present a diverse balance of artistic and educational programming.
- to develop The ACT Arts Centre as an inclusive centre for arts and culture within the community, appealing to a wide range of interests and ages.
- to create mutually beneficial co-presenting opportunities, within our resources, with other not-for-profit arts and community organizations that will strengthen and diversify the cultural sector.
- to encourage and support local artists and arts organizations through the delivery of our vision, mission and values.
Arts Council History
In 1970 the Community Arts Council of Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows was founded on the rich artistic talents of the area. In 1971 the council incorporated as a society called the Community Arts Council of T’Lagunna, a First Nations word for “Golden Ears”, the majestic mountain peaks that feature prominently in both communities. Through the 1980’s the Arts Council continued to grow and over time evolved into the Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows Arts Council (MRPMAC), which truly reflects the service to both communities. The Arts Council has a long history of service to the community, including delivering Arts Programs in partnership with the MRPM Parks and Leisure Services Commission since the 1990’s. In 2003 the MRPMAC undertook the management of The Maple Ridge ACT Arts Centre and Theatre, and began its role as the key presenter in the region bringing a wide variety of performing artists for all ages to perform at The ACT. In 2005 the Arts Council was also asked to take on the operations of the Maple Ridge Art Gallery, to enable the Arts Centre to continue to serve the visual arts community upon the dissolution of the Maple Ridge Art Gallery Society.
Extensive consultation with a broad range of stakeholders took place in 2015, in order to gain knowledge of the community’s understanding of the Arts Council and the Arts Centre. It was found that the many functions and activities developed over forty-five years could be unified under the brand of The ACT Arts Centre, with the byline “Serving Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows” used to better reflect the organization’s funding and regional focus. This consolidation of the public identity as a society and facility allows for the operations of The ACT Arts Centre to be considered as a whole, rather than as a sum of its parts. Additionally, it builds on the strength of the already established name in common public use.
About the Art Gallery
The Gallery’s mission is to present stimulating and diverse displays of artwork by local, regional and national artists and artisans. It also offers talks, workshops and other presentations intended to broaden and enrich the public’s appreciation and understanding of visual culture in its many forms.
The ACT Art Gallery is operated by the The ACT Arts Council. Located within The ACT Arts Centre, it is a large purpose-built space with views overlooking Spirit Square Memorial Peace Park in Maple Ridge. Comprising 1400 square feet, the gallery provides a neutral context that can accommodate artwork in both intimate and monumental settings. In adhering to its mission and mandate, The ACT Art Gallery endeavours to serve the interests of its audience by exhibiting the work of artists working at all levels, and is equally dedicated to excellence in fine art and fine craft.
In recent years, The ACT Art Gallery (formerly the Maple Ridge Art Gallery) has been able to publish professionally printed artist catalogues honouring the work of two senior artists, Lyle Wilson and Barbara Heller. The Lyle Wilson ‘Paint’ catalogue was made possible through generous funding from The Audain Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Michael O’Brian Family Foundation, and the Canada Council, the latter of which supported the artist directly through its Aboriginal traditional art forms program. The Barbara Heller catalogue was made possible through a grant from the Vancouver Foundation. The Gallery also published an online catalogue to accompany a retrospective exhibition of the works of local artist Kristin Krimmel. A printed version of that catalogue is currently in production and will be available, along with other ACT Art Gallery publications, from the Gallery Gift Shop.
Admission to the gallery is free – however donations are much appreciated as we also rely on public support.
Art Gallery History
Originally named the Maple Ridge Art Gallery, owing its origins to this society founded in 1982 and dissolved in 2003, The ACT Gallery has been operated by the Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows Arts Council since 2005. Funding is provided mainly through the Arts Council’s operation agreement with the City of Maple Ridge, through granting organizations, individuals and businesses within our community. The gallery also raises money to support its programs through gallery sales, fundraising activities, donations, and the operation of the Gallery Shop.