MOCCA Award 2009 Presented to AGO CEO Matthew Teitelbaum

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MOCCA Award 2009 Presented to AGO CEO Matthew Teitelbaum

April 23, 2009

The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA) and BMO Financial Group have announced that Matthew Teitelbaum, the Michael and Sonja Koerner Director, and CEO of the Art Gallery of Ontario, received the MOCCA Award 2009 during a gala event at MOCCA in Toronto this evening.

The award recognizes Mr.Teitelbaum’s leadership in the completion of Transformation AGO. In an extraordinary gesture of generosity, Mr.Teitelbaum donated the $20,000 cash prize to the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art in support of their ambitious activities.

“It is deeply gratifying to be a part of the remarkable cultural moment that is the new Art Gallery of Ontario,” said Mr. Teitelbaum. “On behalf of so many who journeyed this transformation with us, I thank MOCCA and BMO Financial Group for this great honour. The visual arts have a special place in our spirit during these challenging social and economic times. MOCCA’s contribution in recent years has been inspirational to all of us. It is wonderful to stand side by side, together, and declare that art really does matter.”

MOCCA Artistic Director David Liss acknowledged Mr. Teitelbaum’s accomplishments as recipient of this year’s award: “Matthew Teitelbaum’s vision and leadership in achieving Transformation AGO is an exemplary and inspirational model for important culture-building in Canada.”

“I’m pleased to congratulate Matthew Teitelbaum on behalf of BMO,” said Gilles Ouellette, President and CEO of the Private Client Group at BMO Financial Group – the lead supporter of the award. “His efforts brought the vision of a transformed AGO to its stunning reality. We are very proud to join with MOCCA in honouring such a deserving builder.”

To honour Mr. Teitelbaum, each guest at the event received a limited edition artwork, created especially for the occasion by nationally renowned artist and long-time AGO advocate David Blackwood. Guests also enjoyed food from Chef Susur Lee’s internationally-acclaimed restaurants Madeline’s, Lee and Shang N.Y.C. The evening featured the installation, Habitat (MOCCA Award), by Toronto-based artist Luis Jacob, and a special slide presentation of Edward Burtynsky’s photographs commissioned for the Transformation AGO project, 2006 – 2008. Other highlights of the evening included a presentation by Honorary Chair Carol Rapp and a live interview between Matthew Teitelbaum and media commentator Allan Gregg.

The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art was founded with a mandate to exhibit, research, collect, and promote innovative art by Canadian and international artists whose works engage and reflect the relevant stories of our times.

The biennial, $20,000 award was established by MOCCA in 2007 to honour a Canadian active in the field of visual arts for innovation, accomplishment or contribution over time, or for a specific project that has national or international significance.

Award Sponsor
BMO Financial Group

Silver Sponsors
EllisDon Corporation, Chef Susur Lee, Madeline’s, Lee, Shang N.Y.C

Bronze Sponsors
Salah Bachir, Benecaid, Johnson Chou, IKEA, Robert Harding, HP,
Nadir + Shabin Mohamed,, St. Joseph Communications, The Ouellette Family Foundation, Linda Young, Anonymous

Event Donors
Aeroplan, Axa Art, HKMB Hub International, Marla and Edward Schwartz,
Rosamond Ivey

Event Suppliers
Canadian Art, Cave Spring Cellars, CJ Graphics Inc.,
Mark J. Mooney & Assoc. Ltd., q mediia solutions, Stagevision Inc.,
Tiffany & Co., Toronto International Art Fair