The Gordon and Marion Smith Foundation for Young Artists, in North Vancouver, was founded in 2002 by the visionary team at the North Vancouver School District and Artists for Kids to build an endowment fund to provide art enrichment opportunities for the children of British Columbia.
Since then the Smith Foundation has expanded to encompass the curation of exhibitions and the development of public programs of the Gordon Smith Gallery of Canadian Art, a gallery dedicated to young audiences.
We named the Gordon and Marion Smith Foundation For Young Artists and the Gordon Smith Gallery of Canadian Art after two champions of the arts and education in Canada Gordon Smith and his late wife, Marion.
Gordon Smith is a celebrated Canadian artist whose work can be seen in celebrated collections such as the National Gallery of Canada, the Vancouver Art Gallery, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC., and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, England. Throughout his career, Gordon has and continues, to believe in the value of supporting art education for youth. This dedication to the arts led Gordon to mentor young artists including some of today’s most influential names in contemporary Canadian art. He finds great satisfaction in uniting the community through his art. To this day, at the age of 96, he still finds time to mentor young artists and give painting lessons to children in his neighbourhood.
Many often remark that Marion had two careers – as a celebrated social worker and as Gordon’s boss. Her opinion and great eye for art influenced Gordon, he always asked her opinion on his latest work. Her career in Social Services for the City of Vancouver was marked by her strong belief that supporting the arts created healthy communities. Marion’s dedication to visual arts education at all levels made lasting contributions to the cultural life of this province.
Together, their tireless work and dedication over the past 50 years has influenced the progression of Canadian art and helped to shape the lives of thousand of young artists.
It is this legacy that we continue at the Smith Foundation, to nurture and develop a love of the arts in our communities.