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Mandate

The Agnes Etherington Art Centre is a research‐intensive art museum that serves as an active educational resource at Queen’s University and as a public gallery for the Kingston region and beyond. By collecting and preserving works of art, exhibiting and interpreting visual culture, and fostering and disseminating research, the Agnes illuminates the great artistic traditions of the past and the innovations of the present. Our work is driven by the belief that encounters with original works of art contribute to understanding the world and ourselves.

Mission

The Agnes Etherington Art Centre:

  • advances the academic mission and priorities of Queen’s University. Through proactive and responsive engagement with students, faculty and staff, we create opportunities for curricular and co-curricular experiential learning, and for scholarly research in visual art and museology. In all its work as an art museum and a welcoming social hub, the Agnes enhances campus life, as well as the public profile, creative leadership and distinction of the university. It provides a vital meeting place and connection point between Queen’s and the world.
  • serves as the public art gallery of Kingston and the region of southeastern Ontario, showcasing high achievement and providing access to renowned artists and specialists, emergent forms of expression and the transformative power of visual art. The Agnes contributes to social cohesion and a dynamic civic identity.
  • is locally anchored, nationally engaged and globally connected. Our immediate context is a constant touchstone and point of reference. At the same time, we participate in wide networks of affiliation through outreach programs, publications, collection loans, traveling exhibitions, online presence, and collaborative projects and exchange.
  • builds and sustains the physical integrity and the intellectual and cultural value of its significant art collections. Key collections are held in contemporary art, historical Canadian art and historical European art, with smaller concentrations of African art, Indigenous art, historical dress and decorative art. These diverse collections crossing historical periods and cultures support specialist, emerging, intra- and inter-disciplinary research and practices.
  • nurtures visual literacy, critical thinking, contemplation, and participation in the creative life of the community. Our programs embrace cultural diversity, foster discourse and inspire engaged citizenship.
  • aspires to excellence in all facets of its work, guided by professional best-practice standards.
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