KPMB Architects has completed their latest cultural project, the Harrison McCain Pavilion, an addition to the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. The elegant 9000-square-foot pavilion is the final and most public phase in the gallery’s three phase expansion and situated directly across from the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, Canada.
“Designing the Harrison McCain Pavilion for the Beaverbrook Art Gallery presented an important opportunity to provide a greater sense of inclusivity and accessibility into a Fredericton landmark,” says KPMB Founding Partner, Shirley Blumberg.
“We hope the new addition will become a catalyst for even more meaningful engagement with the community.” The Harrison McCain Pavilion manifests the Beaverbrook Art Gallery’s mission to bring art and community together.
Through the structure’s fanned façade, passersby are given the opportunity to engage with the provincial art collection from Queen Street, peering into the new public spaces.
In the building’s interior, a multifunctional lobby fosters community engagement with a café, support spaces, membership and visitor services, a gift shop, and ticket hosting.
Here, a fireplace at the east end of the pavilion adds further warmth. The sweeping staircase along the building’s exterior acts as the Beaverbrook’s front porch, creating a community meeting place—a space for connection and gathering.
“We are very excited to welcome the public to view the newest expansion to the Beaverbrook Art Gallery,” says Director and CEO, Tom Smart. “The Harrison McCain Pavilion is breathtaking. This comfortable, spacious addition to our gallery is a contemporary take on the existing architecture in the city.”
Respecting the surrounding heritage district, the Harrison McCain Pavilion responds to the local urban condition through materiality and form.
Rendered in precast concrete and glass, the façade’s understated and gentle curve reflects that of Queen Street and the Saint John River with a classical colonnade that recalls the area’s porticos and porches.
The design also accommodates the water level of the Saint John River, which rises dramatically every spring surrounding the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. Taking this potential for seasonal flooding into consideration, the project elevates the ground floor well above the floodplain.
The KPMB-designed building is an important project for the people of New Brunswick as it increases access to their provincial art gallery’s established collection of Canadian, Indigenous, and international artworks.
The collection includes works by Jack Bush, the Group of Seven, Mary Pratt, the 1820s ‘Grandfather Akwiten’ Wolastoqiyik canoe, the oldest complete birchbark canoe in the world, Salvador Dali, among others—for generations to come. Source by KPMB Architects.
- Location: Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada
- Architect: KPMB Architects
- Project Team: Shirley Blumberg (partner), Matthew Wilson (senior associate), Francesco Valente-Gorjup (associate), Jinsu Park, Jonathan Santaguida, Lukas Bergmark, Ramin Yamin, Gerald DesRochers
- Consultants: Eastern Designers and Company Ltd. (structural engineers), Crandall (mechanical engineers), RSEI Consultants Ltd. (electrical engineers), DotDash (lighting consultant), Entro (signage consultant), JMV Consulting (building science consultant), Aercoustics (acoustical consultant)
- Client: Beaverbrook Art Gallery
- Size: 9,000 ft2 / 836 m2
- Completion: 2022
- Photographs: Julian Parkinson, doublespace photography, Courtesy of KPMB Architects