Be Here: The National Art Gallery of Canada

If you’ve done the Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon or Half-Marathon, then you know the sight well.

After crossing the Ottawa River via the Alexandra Bridge back into Ontario, a summit of glass peaks rises over the hill, every step forward unveiling more of the striking architecture of the National Art Gallery of Canada.

The moment it comes into full view is always memorable (especially for half-marathoners as it marks the beginning of a downhill toward the last leg of the race) but taking a step inside is what makes this national landmark an unforgettable experience.

The gallery is home to thousands of pieces from across different eras and continents, including some of the most well-known names in the art world: Warhol, Van Gogh, Monet, and Picasso.

There are also famous works from star Canadians like Alex Colville and Sheila Butler, as well as one of the country’s largest collections of Aboriginal art.

And the building itself is one of Ottawa’s best-known works of architecture.

Designed by architect Moshe Safdie, the gallery moved to its current home off of Sussex Drive in 1988.

Every year, the gallery offers numerous program and events for all ages, as well as numerous travelling exhibitions.

In the fall of 2016, the gallery also became the permanent home to exhibitions from the Canadian Photography Institute, one of the largest in North America dedicated to photography.

Supported by the National Gallery of Canada Foundation and Scotiabank, the three inaugural exhibitions feature works by Czech photographer Josef Sudek, selections from photography archives of the Globe and Mail newspaper, and Photolab 1, a series of photos about photography.

We don’t think it’s any coincidence that Scotiabank is both the title sponsor of the Ottawa Marathon and a major supporter of art in the capital. Both running and art are critical to the overall health and vibrancy of our communities (and we like to think running is an art too).

“Scotiabank is honoured to partner with the National Gallery of Canada and David Thomson, in establishing the Canadian Photography Institute. It’s our shared hope that the Canadian Photography Institute will continue to have a profound and lasting impact on the preservation and promotion of photography in Canada and around the world,” said Carole Chapdelaine, Senior Vice-President, Quebec/Eastern Ontario Region at Scotiabank.

“At Scotiabank, we know that the arts are an important inspiration for young people to help them to see the world through a different lens. The arts expose us to new ideas, and encourage us all to pursue our own passions.”

If you’re travelling to Ottawa for the 2017 Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend, the National Art Gallery is just one of the many landmarks you’ll see along the routes of the Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon and Scotiabank Ottawa Half-Marathon – but make sure you don’t just see it as you run by on race day.

Like many museums in the National Capital, the National Gallery has free admission and extended operating hours every Thursday! Go check it out before heading to Race Kit Pick-Up!

For more about the gallery and to see a list of their current exhibitions, visit the National Art Gallery website.