News + Ideas

The Art of The Art Installation Process

At MGAC, we use the basic tenants of project management and problem solving to bring our clients’ most challenging – and creative – “what ifs” to life.

From complex art installations to meticulous museum exhibit construction, we’ve served as trusted advisor and project manager for an array of artists and private and publicly funded cultural projects.

Together with our network of professionals – from structural engineers to subject matter experts in everything from aviation to zoology – we conduct feasibility studies, tackle logistical complexities, negotiate contracts, and manage stakeholders – across town or around the world.

Kendall Buster Installation

While many clients love the idea of an art installation, they don’t know how to align their vision with the right artist or manage the production process. Art galleries, which may be adept at fielding inquiries for art installations, often don’t have the skills and experience to negotiate contracts that protect the interests of both artist and client. On the artist side, many lack access to the lines of credit other vendors take for granted. Ensuring the artist is financially secure throughout the project and the client is seeing regular progress is critical to its ultimate success. Navigating the complexities of these relationships and processes is what we love to do – and where we deliver for clients, again and again.

We’re proud to have worked with artist Kendall Buster on more than 25 commissions from project inception to final delivery and installation. Together we’ve built a partnership based on mutual trust.


Outflow, designed as an inverted replica of Calgary’s Mount Peechee, promotes awareness of how public actions impact the environment by collecting trash, pollutants, and contaminants to show exactly what flows through storm sewers into the Bow River.

We worked on behalf of artist Brian Tolle on this complex, six-year project navigating the challenges associated with altering existing pipelines to connect this large sculpture directly into Calgary’s public drainage system. We coordinated the construction and precise installation with city engineers, installers, art fabricators, and the manufacturer of the sculpture’s strong, fiber-reinforced, semi-flexible concrete material, Ductal.

Outflow By Brian Tolle

Outflow’s elegant form, constructed on top of a gravel filled foundation system that can be drained in times of flood, also functions to protect the river by allowing “daylighting” to occur – a process where certain volatile chemicals evaporate in daylight before reaching the river.

Outflow made its public debut to much fanfare from residents and the local environmental design community. One of eight permanent projects outlined in the UEP’s Public Art Plan, Outflow is everything the City and our client envisioned – a beautiful piece of art that uses creative expression to enhance the community and increase awareness around critical environmental issues impacting Calgary.

Interested in pursuing an art installation project, or learning more about our cultural project capabilities? Contact us here.

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Want to learn more about how we can help bring your project to life, or get in touch with one of our many experts? Send us an email with how we can help, and we will be in touch.

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