Science Gallery International (SGI) has announced new funding worth more than €1.1M, which will support its work to develop the Global Science Gallery Network, building on the foundational support of €1M provided by Google’s philanthropic arm, Google.org, in 2012. A donation of €450k was made by the U.S.-based Cordover Family Foundation, with an additional €700k secured from another unnamed philanthropic foundation. The donations came as Dr Michael John Gorman, Founding Science Gallery Director and CEO of SGI, announced that he will transition to a new role in mid-2016.
The development of the Global Science Gallery Network will see seven new galleries created in partnership with leading universities in urban centres of technological and cultural innovation around the world by 2020, based on the approach first pioneered at Trinity College Dublin. The first new gallery will open at King’s College London in 2017, followed closely by Science Gallery Bangalore, in partnership with the Government of Karnataka and Indian Institute of Science.
Plans are also at an advanced stage to establish a gallery in Australia by 2018, and SGI is continuing discussions with a number of potential locations in the USA, Asia and Europe.
The reach of Science Gallery is already extending worldwide through its touring exhibitions – it is currently exhibiting ILLUSION at the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, BIORHYTHM in Taiwan and will open HUMAN+ at renowned art centre CCCB in Barcelona this week. The current Dublin exhibition, SECRET, runs until 1st November.
Speaking on behalf of the Cordover Family Foundation, American philanthropist Ron Cordover said “It is our pleasure to provide this support to SGI, as we share in Science Gallery’s mission of igniting creativity and discovery where art and science intersect. We have full confidence that SGI will succeed in making an important difference to millions of young adults in their search to understand the world around them, and look forward to following the expansion of the Global Science Gallery Network as we approach 2020”.
Dr Michael John Gorman, who has led the development of Science Gallery since its inception in 2007, will transition in mid-2016 to a new role as Professor at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich and Founding Director of the Bavarian Museum of Life Sciences and Natural History.
Gorman will remain involved with Science Gallery, also transitioning to a new role as Founding Chairman of the Executive Council of the Global Science Gallery Network, where he will work directly with the Directors of each gallery in the emergent Network.
Commenting on the announcements, Chris Horn, Chair of SGI said “With this valuable philanthropic funding, SGI is now on a strong footing to continue the expansion of the Global Science Gallery Network, and make it the world’s leading platform for inspiring curious minds at the interface of science and art. Michael John has played a key role in securing this funding, and the development of both the Science Gallery concept and Network over the past eight years, and for this we are sincerely grateful. He has championed the need to bring art and science together to inspire young adults worldwide, and positioned SGI to achieve its vision of eight galleries worldwide by 2020. We wish him the greatest success with this exciting new project in Munich, and are delighted that he will continue to play a strong role with Science Gallery as Chair of the Executive Council.”
Speaking about his transition, CEO of Science Gallery, Dr Michael John Gorman said “Working to establish Science Gallery has been the greatest privilege of my career. It is with great excitement that we are able to announce this new and transformational funding today, which matches the gift received from Google.org in 2012, and sets SGI on a firm footing to secure all eight Science Gallery locations by 2020, as we reach the halfway milestone. As I transition to my new role in Germany in mid-2016, I am grateful to have worked alongside so many incredible people in the past eight years at Science Gallery, and delighted to be able to continue my involvement with Science Gallery as Chair of the Executive Council. More than ever, I look forward to seeing the Global Network ignite the creativity of 15-25 year olds through the collision of art and science, inspiring the innovators of the future”.
Led by Chris Horn, the SGI Board has established a search committee to identify a new CEO, who is expected to be in place within the first half of 2016. The position is expected to be advertised in October.