Nova Scotia

Still no word on Annie Leibovitz exhibit in Halifax, 4 years after works donated

Colin Stinson, manager of marketing and communications for the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, said there are no plans for a Leibovitz exhibition this fiscal year.

Al and Faye Mintz of Toronto donated 2,000 prints to the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia in 2013

In the spring of 2016, art gallery officials they said they needed help from Annie Leibovitz herself but the photographer would not be free until 2017. (Jay LaPrete/Associated Press)

It's been four years since a Toronto family announced the donation of 2,000 works by famed American photographer Annie Leibovitz to the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia in Halifax.

Since then a few pieces of the collection have been put on public display, but no major exhibition of the work has been mounted and it looks like it will be at least another year before that happens.

Colin Stinson, the art gallery's manager of marketing and communications, said in an email there are no plans for a Leibovitz exhibition this fiscal year. 

Images donated in 2013

At the time of the Mintz family's donation, the director of the art gallery called it "the largest single gift we've ever received."

The collection of images were published in 10 books beginning in 1983 and includes an iconic photograph of John Lennon and Yoko Oko taken hours before Lennon was killed in December 1980.

It also includes photos of a naked and pregnant Demi Moore, Oscar-winner Whoopi Goldberg in a milk-filled tub and the Blues Brothers.

Help needed from Leibovitz

Officials with the gallery have said they don't want to jeopardize the economic potential of a show by rushing.

Last spring, they said they needed help from Leibovitz herself but the photographer would not be free until this year.

Stinson said the gallery has maintained contact with the Leibovitz team since the collection was donated.  

Photographer's work on display in France

Meantime, a show of Leibovitz's early work, from 1968 to 1983, is currently on display at a contemporary art centre in southern France.

Luma Arles announced in March it had recently acquired 8,000 of Leibovitz's photographs, including work from the Vietnam War, the 1972 presidential campaign and the 1974 resignation of Richard Nixon.

The exhibit, which opened May 27, will continue until Sept. 25.


Pam Berman


Pam Berman is CBC Nova Scotia's municipal affairs reporter. She's been a journalist for almost 35 years and has covered Halifax regional council since 1997. That includes four municipal elections, 19 budgets and countless meetings. Story ideas can be sent to