Art Sales + Services is operated by the Art Gallery of Hamilton in support of emerging and established Canadian artists. Commissions are paid to artist on all sales and rentals, while the remaining proceeds directly fund exhibitions and public programming at the AGH.
Established in 1955 as the Picture Rental program, the program was created by the AGH Women’s Auxiliary, now the AGH Volunteer Committee, to encourage public interest in Canadian art.
At that time, the Art Gallery of Hamilton was the only art museum in Canada and only one of five in North America, to offer such a service. The program, which supported artists and funded the growth and stewardship of the AGH permanent collection, was open once a month and run solely by AGH Volunteers.
By the 1970s, the Art Rental service was open more frequently. Annual art sales (named The Hang-Ups) featured a number of artists in the Art Rental collection who are now internationally well-known, including Jack Bush, Norval Morrisseau, Jean-Paul Riopelle, and Harold Town, among others.
Today, Art Sales + Services continues to support Canadian artists, offering 750+ works by 200+ artists, many of whom live in the GTHA / Niagara region. Returning over $150,000 annually to participating artists, and in turn to the local artist community, the Art Sales + Services program remains true to its goal of introducing and supporting artists.