We at Harcourt House are extremely grateful for the generous support from the Edmonton community and beyond. In a very short period of time, we achieved our original goal of $35,000 and in order to maintain the momentum we have increased that goal to encourage our community to build on this solid foundation. When we started, we chose a goal that seemed reasonable, so as not to discourage our supporters from contributing whatever they could manage in these difficult times. We understood that the goal looked insignificant when compared to the total amount required to purchase the facility but, it was not only the financial support we were hoping for, but more importantly the indication that there was real community support for the role Harcourt House plays in the Edmonton arts community and in the community as a hole. This indication is vital when it comes to dealing with various government agencies and with major corporate and private donors, whose support we need to achieve our larger goal.
A legitimate question that has been raised by potential donors is what would happen to the money should, for whatever reason we are not able to attain possession of our current facility. We called the project the “Harcourt House Artist Run Centre Endurable Fund” because regardless of the outcome of our current negotiations, Harcourt House will survive and continue our role in providing our community with the services they have come to expect. We would need to find a new home and we would need these resources to cover the costs of developing that space to offer the professional services we pride ourselves on. We are still very hopeful that we will be successful in securing the Harcourt House facility but even if we can continue in this location, we will be taking on much greater financial responsibility for the care and operation of the facility. So, whatever the future holds for Harcourt House your support and contributions will ensure that we have the resources to move forward.
President of the Board
W.E.C.A.N. Society/Harcourt House Artist Run Centre
E. Ross Bradley
Vice President of the Board
W.E.C.A.N. Society/Harcourt House Artist Run Centre
CALL FOR SUPPORT!
35 years ago, Alberta artists stood up and helped when the people of Edmonton needed it.
Today, we, the artist inheritors of that legacy need your help.
We at Harcourt House Artist Run Centre have an opportunity to purchase Harcourt House facilities. Recently, the Minister of Alberta Infrastructure has generously granted us a one-year extension to our lease, which will give us until November 30, 2023, to accomplish our fundraising goal to make our home permanent and stable.
In order to secure the ownership of Harcourt House a total of 3.5 million dollars must be raised.
The vast majority of the money needed will be raised through a combination of major donors ($100,000.00 + each) and Government sources.
We at Harcourt House Artist Run Centre also recognize and appreciate from our deepest hearts that not everyone has that kind of money to give. That is why we set up this GoFundMe campaign, for people who want to help with whatever amount that they can afford to contribute. Please know that every penny helps and is appreciated in our quest to save Harcourt House and that your donations are absolutely necessary for us to achieve our ultimate goal.
The story of Harcourt House Artist Run Centre
July 31, 1987 the Black Friday Tornado struck the City of Edmonton. Within days of that devastating event Brian Clark, an Indigenous sculptor originally from Fort McMurray, approached Lorraine Noel who worked in the Parks and Recreation Department of the City of Edmonton with the idea for “Artists for Tornado Relief”.
Clark and Noel brought together a group of artists who, in under six weeks, organized and staged an art auction fundraiser. More than two hundred artists from across Alberta donated their work. The Brick Warehouse furniture store supplied vans to transport the donated art that was collected at the Canadian Native Friendship Centre. The event was held at the Edmonton Gardens (the pre-cursor of the Coliseum Arena). The auction event was televised, and people could phone in to place bids. The event was opened by then Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, Her Honour, The Honourable Helen Hunley, and was attended by City of Edmonton Mayor Laurence Decore. The money raised was handed over to the Red Cross for distribution to people affected by the Tornado.
Out of devastation a community developed.
After the successful fundraiser, the organizing group of artists decided to continue the momentum. A not-for-profit society (Where Edmonton Community Artists Network (W.E.C.A.N.) Society) was established and a search for a home was undertaken. With the help of Hon. Ernie Isley, the Minister of Public Works for the Province of Alberta, a location was secured. On September 1, 1988, the W.E.C.A.N. Society moved into the Harcourt House buildings, which has been its home ever since.
Harcourt House Artist Run Centre has presented an ongoing schedule of exhibitions by artists from Alberta, across Canada, and from around the world for thirty-four years. Education programs have offered workshops and ongoing development opportunities to people who are just beginning their journey as an artist to seasoned professionals, all working side-by-side. This includes an ongoing program that is offered free of charge to individuals who face a variety of barriers so that they have they opportunity to express themselves through visual art.
We are truly Thankful, and our Hearts are full of Gratitude for every donation that we receive.
Every person who contributes to this campaign, in whatever amount that they can, is helping Harcourt House Artist Run Centre remain vibrant far into the future.
All contributors toward Harcourt House Artist Run Centre Endurable Fund will be listed on Harcourt House’s website. Benefactors making contributions in the amount of $250 and higher will be featured on a Harcourt House Permanent Legacy Project Wall.
Together, W.E.C.A.N. continue the legacy of supporting our Alberta Artists!