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Our Story

In 1998 a collective of passionate and eccentric Cortes Island artists, led by Norberto Rodriguez de la Vega, took it upon themselves to turn the historic and long-unused Whaletown School into an artist-run gallery. The early years were invigorating, productive, chaotic at times and brought the island art community together in a summer-long revolving exhibition of their work. 


Twenty-five plus years down the road, the summer exhibition season takes place in a professional-level gallery space with both accomplished and emerging artists exhibiting their work.


The Gallery acquired legal non-profit status in 2021 with the registered name of Old Schoolhouse Art Gallery Society. In 2022, a paid gallery manager came on, in a part-time seasonal position, and classes began in a pilot project for art education.

The current Board of Directors is comprised of Kristen Scholfield-Sweet, Janet Turpin, Meinsje Vlaming, Lynne Barker, Ayami Stryck, Gerri Davis and Christann Kennedy.


The Old Schoolhouse Art Gallery Society


  1. To exhibit the art of Cortes Island artists.

  2. To provide a physical and/or virtual space for shared enthusiasm about art.

  3. To facilitate the learning, understanding and appreciation of the Arts.

The Board of Directors will operate with these values:

  1. Forward-looking vision and innovation, within a knowledge and appreciation of Gallery history and continuity.

  2. Collective rather than individual decisions.

  3. Providing and maintaining a safe venue and virtual space for those engaged in art practice and art education.

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