Audain Art Museum opens to public March 12 

Arts news: Will Ross Band returns; WSSF music lineup announced; WAC receives grant

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The Audain Art Museum will open to the public on Saturday, March 12.

Originally slated to debut in January, the public opening of the 55,000-sq.-ft., $35-million museum was delayed to ensure that the construction and building commissioning were complete, a museum spokesperson said in a release.

Entrepreneur and developer Michael Audain and his wife Yoshiko Karasawa founded the museum to house their extensive collection.

With an emphasis on world-class British Columbian art, the museum will house a First Nations collection spanning 200 years, including pre-colonial masks and contemporary artworks, with significant pieces by the late Haida master Bill Reid and Squamish Nation artist Xwalacktun.

Paintings on display include two-dozen works by Emily Carr, Canada's most important collection of E.J. Hughes paintings and B.C. landscapes by Group of Seven artists Lawren Harris and Fred Varley.

The Carr paintings include The Crazy Stair purchased by Audain for the museum in 2013 for a record-setting $3.393 million.

In all, there will be over 300 artworks on display.

The museum will also offer temporary exhibitions, opening with a collection of Mexican modernist works by Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros and José Clemente Orozco, known as Los Trés Grandes.

The unique ark-like building was designed by Patkau Architects and is located on Blackcomb Way in Whistler Village.

The Audain Art Museum will be open six days a week, only closing on Tuesdays. Admission fees for adults aged 17 and older is $18. Admission for youth and children aged 16 and under, along with Audain membership holders, is free.

There will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the museum, followed by a sold-out reception and dinner at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, on Saturday, March 4. 

Visit www.audainartmuseum.com for more information.

Will Ross Band at Dusty's ahead of second album

Will Ross is ramping up his musical presence in Whistler with a rare performance by his six-piece band ahead of the release of their next album.

"We want to get people excited to come and see us play, it has been the solo stuff so much," Ross says.

The band is made up of Emily Molloy, Marco Roach, Garth Mosbaugh, Jay MacNeil and John David.

The band plays at Dusty's Bar & Grill on Saturday, Feb. 20 at 9 p.m.

Ross says the appearance comes as the band prepares to record its follow-up album to 2014's Freeloader.

WSSF announces music lineup

Five bands have been announced for the Outdoor Concert Series at the World Ski and Snowboard Festival.

A Tribe Called Red and Modern Space are performing, as are BadBadNotGood, Bear Mountain and Skiitour.

The festival, which takes place from April 8 to 17, is a 10-day celebration of mountain culture and sports.

All shows take place on the Fido Mainstage. All concerts are free.

For information on the festival and tickets to events, visit www.wssf.com.

WAC receives grant from American Friends of Whistler

The Whistler Arts Council (WAC) has been given a donation of $10,000 from the American Friends of Whistler, through the Spalding Foundation.

The funds will be used to benefit the creative classes offered by the WAC.

"The community arts programming will benefit immensely from this donation by providing the funding to offer more classes and workshops to all ages," said Shelagh Thiessen, WAC arts programmer, in a release.

"We will also be able to draw on new local talent to teach classes and continue collaboration with community groups."

Visit www.artswhistler.com for more information on classes and events.

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