The North West Company, past and present leaders announce a major gift to the WAG’s Inuit Art Centre

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Pictured (from left to right): Dr. Stephen Borys, Director, CEO, and Exhibition Curator of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; H. Sanford Riley, Chairman of the Board; Judy Sutherland; Ian Sutherland, past CEO and Chairman; Stella Kennedy; and Edward Kennedy, President & CEO.


The North West Company, along with past and present leaders, have come together to make a $2 million contribution to the Inuit Art Centre now under construction in Winnipeg.

“The North West Company and its leaders are champions of the WAG and the Centre, stepping forward to create a platform for Inuit to share their stories with the world,” said Dr. Stephen Borys, Director, CEO, and Exhibition Curator of the Winnipeg Art Gallery.

This commitment will help the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) build cultural and economic bridges between northern and southern Canada, and help create understanding through personal connections, stories, and art. The Centre will amplify Inuit voices, and ensure Inuit stories are preserved for generations to come.

The Inuit Art Centre is set to open in 2020, and will include over 13,000 carvings, drawings, prints, textiles and new media. The collection is supported by an unparalleled record of Inuit art exhibitions, publications, and research that together will create the world’s largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art.

“I am delighted that my colleagues at The North West Company, and the company itself, have chosen to invest in this very important project,” said H. Sanford Riley, Chair of the Board at The North West Company. “I’ve come to realize through my years with The North West Company the importance of art to Inuit, and to their culture and communities.”

The WAG thanks the donors: The North West Company; Edward Kennedy, President & CEO, and Stella Kennedy; H. Sanford Riley, Chair of the Board, and Deborah Riley; former Chair, founding shareholder, past CEO and Chairman Ian Sutherland, and Judy Sutherland; and J. Derek Riley, Founding Chair of The North West Company (deceased).