The Public Art Centre is a not-for-profit charitable organization with a mission to promote the appreciation for and support the practice of the visual arts in St. Thomas and Elgin County; with our doors closed and our programs cancelled we are already seeing the effects. If you are in a position to do so, you can help to support STEPAC the following ways, every bit helps!
The doors to our building may be closed, but please enjoy our online exhibitions and new artists biographies, online publications, and resources, sign up for the newletter, and don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook and subscribe on YouTube.
In 2019, the Public Art Centre celebrated its' 50th Anniversary, our successes have been put on hold for awhile. Our Redtail Cocktail Party and Silent Auction has been postponed and we will be working with Redtail to bring you the safest way for us to get together. Thank you to our sponsors for their ongoing support!
The St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre’s Permanent Collection is the largest and most significant in the St. Thomas and Elgin County region, made up of approximately 1897 artworks of local, regional, national and international origin in a variety of media, with special emphasis on contemporary and historical Canadian art and on the artists associated with St. Thomas and Elgin County. The historical component of the Collection is based on approximately 400 works by local artists from the 19th and 20th century, with content that demonstrates our important history, which includes, oil paintings, prints, sculpture and watercolours. Several major gifts of artwork have been made to the Collection, including the St. Thomas-Smith and Clark McDougall works and through a purchase of the artwork from Alma College.
It is with great gratitude that we acknowledge the McDougall Group for the substantial gift of artwork by Artist Clark McDougall to the St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre’s Permanent Collection, making it the largest and most significant collection of his art works.
This important gift has been generously donated by the McDougall Group, in memory of Don and Marion McDougall,whose members are -
David (nephew) and Joyce Lemon,
Eric Lemon, great nephew
Peter (nephew) and Christine Lemon,
John Levack, nephew
Robert Lemon, nephew
Aedon (great nephew) and Jamee Lemon
Grant Lemon, great nephew
Paul Lemon (nephew) and Joan Innis
Jay Lemon, great nephew
Amy Lemon, great niece
Robert (nephew) and Nancy Levack
December 17, 1980, Clark McDougall dies– his estate including most of the unsold artistic output of his entire life passes to his brother Donald McDougall and Don’s wife Marion McDougall of St. Thomas.
1983 – 2009, Donald and his wife Marion engage the Mira Goddard Gallery of Toronto to represent and market Clark’s works – Don and Marion also establish the Clark McDougall Visual Art Scholarship – providing financial assistance to graduating Elgin County high school grads who go on to study Fine and Visual Arts in College or University.
1984, Donald McDougall dies and art estate passes wholly to Marion McDougall who oversees art sales in consultation with her nephew Peter Lemon of St. Thomas through Mira Goddard Gallery
2004, Marion and Peter negotiate donation of Clark’s large body of archival works (approx. 35,000 pieces)– sketches, preparatory drawings, unfinished works and extensive slide collection of local landscapes to the McIntosh Gallery at the University of Western Ontario in conjunction with curator Catherine Elliot Shaw.
Spring 2009 - present, Marion and Peter engage the Michael Gibson Gallery of London Ontario to represent the Clark’s remaining unsold art.
Summer 2010 Marion and Peter donate Clark’s multi volume hand scripted daily diaries to the Weldon Library at the University of Western Ontario
Feb 28 2011, Marion McDougall dies leaving the remaining unsold art works to her immediate family, comprising nephews, great nephews and a great niece (the McDougall Group) now managed by nephew Peter Lemon
December 2011 – the McDougall Group donates a large quantity (220 pieces) of early and later finished works – signed and unsigned, to the St. Thomas- Elgin Public Art Centre
January 2017- the McDougall Group donates the remaining works (170 pieces) of early and later finished and unfinished works - signed and unsigned, to the St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre
The St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre acknowledged the generous gift and has developed a Clark McDougall Resource Room on the lower level of the facility. This room will be used to house and preserve the 430 works in the Art Centre's permanent collection. The room is available to the community by appointment.