A volunteer-led, non-profit community arts centre...
To develop, promote and celebrate the visual, performing and literary arts in Port Moody.
The Port Moody Arts Centre Society is a not-for-profit community arts organization mandated to develop, promote, and celebrate the visual, performing, and literary arts in Port Moody. The Society operates the Port Moody Arts Centre, a centre of excellence for artistic practice and education located in the historic Old City Hall and Appleyard House buildings, in the heart of Port Moody. With a mission to promote participation in the arts, the Arts Centre offers over 380 classes annually for people of all ages and experience levels to explore their creativity in a variety of artistic disciplines, including visual, ceramic, theatre, and media arts, as well as private music lessons for more than 170 students. The Arts Centre is also home to a contemporary art gallery, showcasing the work of local, national, and international artists through a professionally curated exhibition program. In addition, the Arts Centre hosts several community and fundraising events, such as the celebrated annual Girls Night Out and Gala fundraisers and the biannual Wearable Art Awards, which draws Canadian and international entrants.
Committed to bringing positive arts experiences to the community, the Port Moody Arts Centre Society is a registered charitable society governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, managed by a General Manager, and run by a dedicated team of staff, including 4 full-time and 6 part-time employees, and more than 30 instructors. Together, we provide arts and culture leadership to promote and inspire the artistic and creative expression of widely divergent communities. As a Society, we work collaboratively to build a culturally richer and more vibrant Port Moody—City of the Arts.
Our funding sources include:
- City of Port Moody
- revenue from programs & memberships
- commission on gallery art sales
- revenue from fundraising events
- grants and sponsorships
- donations from corporations, community and individuals
Our Charitable registration #8677 45671 RR0001.
Part of Port Moody's History
Our buildings and grounds are a significant part of Port Moody's history.
Old City Hall:
Our beautiful Heritage Building was the original City Hall of Port Moody. Built in 1913 - the same year as the incorporation of Port Moody as a city - it also served as the police station, jail and fire hall.
The tall western tower was used to dry the fire hoses and now houses the elevator. The original jail in the basement was converted to a Cold War bomb shelter in the 1960's and today is home to the pottery kilns.
H.A. Ungless and his family lived as caretakers in City Hall for many years. As Mr. Ungless did not have a car he would - in his spare time - walk between New Westminster and Haney to fulfill his charitable missions as a Salvation Army Envoy.
Another caretaker of City hall was Jack Lye, one of the longest-serving city clerks in the history of BC.
Centennial Appleyard House:
The building now known as Centennial Appleyard House was built by Frederick Appleyard as his family home. Appleyard was a partner in one of the City's seven sawmills and served as a City Councillor in 1917. The house is a fine example of a style is known as a Foursquare Edwardian. Construction began on a lot near the corner of Moody and Clarke Streets in 1907 and was completed in 1910.
In 2005, the then owner of the house applied to redevelop the land and demolish the house. Local developer and restauranter, Fred Soofi, bought the house and moved it across Clarke Street, where he renovated it as a private home. When he sold the house, another restauranteur bought it and remodeled it into the Heritage Pizza Company.
When the Evergreen Line was approved, the house (which fell on Evergreen Line right-of-way) was purchased by the Province and gifted to the City of Port Moody, who in turn designated it for the Arts Centre. Working together, the Port Moody Arts Centre Society and the City of Port Moody received a Federal grant from Canadian Heritage to add the house to the existing Arts Centre as a Centennial project.
The Centennial Appleyard House addition to the Arts Centre was officially opened on September 6, 2014. The main floor - named the Appleyard Parlour - serves as Arts Centre programming space, a community gathering space, and a rental space for private functions.
Making A Modern Connection
Modern fire code regulations required that public-use wood-frame buildings must be 20 feet apart. The Atrium was conceived by the Art Centre's Planning Committee as a way to fill that 20' gap to both connect the historical buildings together, and to add function, beauty and design to the Centre. The Atrium is a free-standing, steel beam structure that shows off the original exteriors of both buildings, and with the glass-end walls, it offers a beautiful, bright reception area.
The New Bridge:
A wide new bridgeway leads into the Atrium and is the new entrance to the Arts Centre. The custom-built reception desk is made from native Alder, and works well for greeting and serving Arts Centre guests, but also as a bar area during special occasions.
New Studio Space:
The lower levels of the Atrium and Centennial Appleyard House have new studio spaces, including an outdoor studio. These new areas give us space to attract new insructors and do things we have never done before.
The stone cairn on the corner of St. John's and Kyle Street was erected to commemorate the driving of the Golden Spike, and the subsequent arrival of the first Canadian Transcontinental train from Montreal. The fountain on the front lawn was built in 1959 by grateful citizens to recognize the years of social work done by H.A. Ungless. The maple tree on the east side of the property was planted by Mayor and Council on July 4, 1986 to commemorate the centenary of the arrival of the first CPR passenger train in Port Moody. That same tree was painted blue in 2011 by Australian artists Konstantin Dimopoulos as part of a Vancouver Biennale Open Air Museum Project. Several commemorative plaques may also be found inside the Arts Centre.