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Art Gallery of Northumberland to reopen Sept. 24 with new administrator

Cecilia Nasmith

By Cecilia Nasmith, Northumberland Today

CECILIA NASMITH Northumberland Today
With Tara Lember as director of visitor services and administration, the Art Gallery of Northumberland will reopen Sept. 24.

CECILIA NASMITH Northumberland Today With Tara Lember as director of visitor services and administration, the Art Gallery of Northumberland will reopen Sept. 24.

COBOURG - 

When it closed operations Feb. 1, the Art Gallery of Northumberland board said it would be back.

As of Sept. 24, that pledge will be kept, with Tara Lember as director of visitor services and administration.

Lember came aboard Sept. 1, spending her first morning in the premises on the third floor of Cobourg's Victoria Hall making plans among the bare walls with gallery board members and municipal council liaison Debra McCarthy.

The gallery closed last winter among a number of concerns, including fiscal ones that include a long-term debt of $20,754 to the Town of Cobourg, a nearly tapped-out $40,000 line of credit and a deficit that (had they not closed) was projected to hit $15,145 by the year-end date of March 31.

In the months since February, board members and supporters have worked together on governance issues, financial concerns, staffing issues and operational challenges to ensure that, once the gallery reopens, it would be viable.

Plans called for the hiring of a staffer to serve as director of visitor services and administration. Lember was announced as their choice this week.

With a master's degree in museum management, as well as an undergraduate degree in anthropology-history, Lember is highly regarded as a teacher and public speaker, the press release said.

“Tara has diverse experience as a curatorial assistant, conservation technician, archivist, artistic administrator and general management in the arts,” it listed.

“I am very excited for this experience, and I can't wait to get this gallery reopened,” Lember stated.

Last March, gallery treasurer Rick Miller announced that their first show upon reopening in September would be selections from the permanent collection and that a second show, to open in November, would be a juried exhibition.

The first show Lember will work on will open Sept. 24. It is called Opening The Vault: Reframing The Collection.

“The board of directors gratefully acknowledges the strong support of the mayor and Cobourg town council to assist with the funding of the Art Gallery of Northumberland to re-open its doors and move forward,” the press release said.

cecilia.nasmith@sunmedia.ca

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