Official gift donations

Official gifts of public art or commemorations are often made as part of the recognition of a significant historic event, a major charitable contribution or public campaign.

The Culture Division's guidelines for reviewing public art are used when considering a donation. Specific aesthetic and technical criteria must be met, and there can be no conditions attached to the donation. These rules help in maintaining the prestige of the City's public art collection.


The City requires a written submission with a detailed description of the gift, the relevance of the subject matter to the City of Toronto and contact names for follow up. Staff submit a recommendation to the appropriate Council committee. The final decision about accepting the donation rests with City Council. If the decision is favourable, the City staff work out the installation details with the donor or his/her designate.

Enquiries should be sent in writing to the Chief of Protocol as shown above.


  • suitability of the donation as determined by the guidelines and mandate of the Art Committee for Public Places
  • quality of the work, based on a professional assessment, detailed written proposal, drawing and/or maquette, or photographs
  • suitability of the theme of the artwork to a public venue
  • appropriateness of the artwork to the site, in the case where a site has been identified
  • appropriateness of the process for selecting the artist/artwork
  • qualifications of the artist based on documentation of past work and the artist's professional qualifications
  • financial implication based on cost of project implementation, installation of the work, and ongoing maintenance of the work
  • provision by the donor for ongoing maintenance of the work and cost of relocation and removal
  • absence of restrictive conditions imposed by the donor
  • susceptibility of the work to wear and vandalism and potential danger to the public
  • suitability of the work to the technical requirements of installation in public spaces
  • suitability of the work to the environmental conditions of public display
  • ease of maintenance and repair

Please contact a Public Art Officer with the Cultural Partnership unit in Economic Development & Culture if you have any questions about donations of public art, memorials or commemorations.

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