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10 free museums & galleries to check out in Vancouver this winter

Press Release

4 January 2024

For the art enthusiast and the museum lover, Vancouver is not exactly the cheapest place to be. High admission fees can be a barrier for many looking to access the local art and history scenes, so we thought we’d share some spots around the city that offer a unique look into new artistic perspectives free of charge.

Without further ado, here are 10 free museums & galleries to check out in Vancouver.

The Belkin Gallery

Now open from renovations, the Belkin Gallery is set to exhibit Aporia (Notes to a Medium) from January 12th to April 14th, which includes Elizabeth Zvonar’s Gatamelatta collection at the Koerner Library.

The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Tuesday to Friday, and from noon until 5 pm on weekends.

Where: 1825 Main Mall, UBC

Vancouver Bienne Open Air Museum

At the crux of local art, social action, and community engagement is The Vancouver Biennale – a nonprofit exhibiting public art throughout the city. The Open Air Museum includes everything from sculptures and murals to new media, music, and film. The exhibition features both local talent and internationally acclaimed artists like Ai Weiwei, Dennis Oppenheim, and OSGEMEOS.

They also have two touring exhibits right now: Zarina Laalo’s Threads Through Time (until March 17th) and Weaving Cultural Identities (until March 17th).

Where: Public art throughout Vancouver

The Gallery George

Recently relocated from Vancouver’s Eastside to Gastown, The Gallery George always has plenty of amazing artists on rotation. Right now, you can check out “Apricity,” featuring works by Belinda McNiece and Alice Jang until January 28th.

The gallery is open from Wednesday to Sunday from noon until 6 p.m., and there will be an open reception on Friday, January 5th.

Where: 140 West Hastings Street

Pendulum Gallery

The Pendulum Gallery also showcases some incredible artwork free of charge to access, but note that there are currently no exhibits, according to its website.

The gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Monday to Wednesday, until 9 p.m. from Thursday to Friday, and until 5 p.m. on Saturday.

Where: 885 West Georgia Street

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Gallery Jones Fine Art

Gallery Jones reopens for the new year on Saturday, January 6th, so stay tuned for upcoming exhibitions and artists.

The gallery is open on Tuesdays through Fridays from 11 to 6 p.m., and from noon until 5 p.m. on Saturdays.

Where: 258 East 1st Avenue

Contemporary Art Gallery

Vancouver’s Contemporary Art Gallery has a ton of exciting exhibits and programming in the works. Visitors can check out Trinh T. Minh-ha’s first film in postcolonial cinema, Reassemblage (1982) and Lotus L. Kang’s “In Cascades” – both of which are on until January 24th.

The gallery is open from noon until 6 pm from Tuesday to Saturday.

Where: 555 Nelson Street

Bill Reid Gallery

While regular admission is $11, every first Friday of the month at the Bill Reid Gallery is free for all ages. Guests have the chance to explore many First Nations’ works, including “Bright Futures” (on until January 14th) by multiple contemporary emerging and established Indigenous artists, and the upcoming exhibit, “13 Moons Around the Lake,” (on until January 28th) curated by Nlaka’pamux artist Nadine Spence as part of the larger project, “Honouring Our Grandmothers’ Healing Journey.”

The gallery is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Wednesday to Sunday.

Where: 639 Hornby Street

Chali-Rosso Art Gallery

Offering a look at original works of art by some of the most well-known modern artists like Picasso, Dalí, Chagall, Matisse, and more is the Chali-Rosso Art Gallery. More recently, the gallery has come out with a featured collection by Joan Miró.

The gallery is open from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from Tuesday to Sunday.

Where: 312-999 Canada Place
Equinox Gallery

Starting January 13th, Equinox Gallery is presenting an exhibition titled “New Paintings” by Philippe Raphanel until February 10th. Stay tuned for future projects on display at the Fairmont Pac Rim.

Where: 3642 Commercial Drive
Vancouver Art Gallery

Last but certainly not least, we come to the Vancouver Art Gallery. While not technically free every day, admission is free on the first Friday of every month. So if you’re hoping to see the current “A Tangled Garden” by J.E.H. Macdonald, now’s your chance. Or you can gear up for “Horizons” or “The Posters of Lawrence Weiner” on March 9th.

Where: 750 Hornby Street

And that’s a wrap on some great free museums & galleries you can visit in Vancouver.
Curiocity Staff

With a curated slate of what matters in your city, Curiocity presents you with the most relevant local food, experiences, news, deals, and adventures. We help you get the most out of your city and focus on the easy-to-miss details so that you’re always in the know.

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