Visitor Guidelines

We are so excited to have reopened our doors on July 2 to AGO Members and Annual Pass Holders and to everyone purchasing single tickets on July 23. Visitors will need to book timed-entry tickets in advance on our ticketing website prior to their visit.

Don’t have a membership or annual pass? No problem. Check out our Ways to Visit page to sign up today.

The health and safety of our employees and visitors is our top priority. We have implemented the following to ensure you have a safe and fun experience:

  • Time-ticketing - please book your ticket online and in advance before visiting the Gallery. We are limiting the number of people in the Gallery at any one time to allow for physical distancing. This also means you aren’t standing in line for long.

  • We are open Thursday through Sunday from 10:30 to 5:00pm – this will help us maintain our high standards of cleanliness and give you a safe and enjoyable experience.

  • We have increased our cleaning schedule and will be disinfecting high touch and high traffic areas multiple times a day.




FAQs

Reopening FAQs

What do I need to know before visiting the AGO?

We want all our visitors as well as our employees and volunteers to stay healthy and safe when visiting the AGO. Please, be smART before booking your ticket online:

  • Don’t visit the AGO if you feel unwell.
  • Wear a mask during your entire visit.*
  • Please follow posted health and safety guidelines.
  • Remain at least two (2) metres apart from other visitors at all times.
  • Do not gather in groups; please keep your “social circle” to a maximum of 4 people.
  • Keep to the right in narrow corridors.
  • Please wait your turn. There are a limited number of visitors allowed in spaces, including galleries and elevators.
  • Use hand sanitization stations located throughout the building.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue; if no tissue is available, use your elbow.

*Everyone over the age of two is required to wear a mask during their visit.

How do I book a ticket to visit?

We welcomed our community back in stages: We reopened on July 2 to AGO Members and Annual Pass Holders and on July 23 to everyone purchasing single tickets.

To help maintain the health and safety of everyone in the AGO, timed-entry ticketing is in place to ensure that a limited number of visitors enter the gallery every 30 minutes, from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Please book timed-entry tickets in advance on AGO.ca prior to visiting the Gallery.

Not a Member or Annual Pass Holder? Purchase one online, or if you are 25 and under sign up for free, which will allow you to book a time as soon as you sign up. All you have to do is log in to your account and book a ticket.

There are a few things you’ll need to take into account before heading down:

  • Please arrive no more than 10 minutes before your entry time.
  • Please have your ticket ready for scanning (hard copy, or on your phone).
  • Please follow posted health and safety guidelines.
  • Wear a mask during your entire visit*
  • Visitors must remain at least two (2) metres apart inside the gallery.
  • Please keep your “social circle” to a maximum of 4 people.
  • Coat check will be closed; visitors are asked to leave oversized bags at home, and be prepared to wear their backpacks on the front their body.
  • No outside food and drink, except for sealed water bottles and baby bottles.
  • Use of the unsupervised umbrella stand is free.

*Everyone over the age of two is required to wear a mask during their visit.

Are visitors to the AGO required to wear a mask or face covering?

To help keep our community healthy and safe, all visitors over 2 years of age are required to wear a mask or face covering while visiting the AGO.

Is anyone exempt from having to wear a mask or face covering while visiting the AGO?

We ask that all our visitors help us keep everyone healthy and safe by wearing a mask or face covering while visiting the Gallery.

If it’s not possible for you to wear a mask / face covering or a face shield due to a pre-existing health condition, or other reasons protected by the Ontario Human Rights Code, please email our Contact Centre - contactus@ago.ca - in advance and we will attempt to accommodate wherever possible.

Will the AGO be screening visitors and employees before entering the Gallery?

Yes. Signs will be installed in the visitor line asking specific questions (see below). A Protective Services Officer will be stationed at the kiosk outside the AGO entrance and will ask visitors if they have answered “No” to all five questions. If they have, they will be able to proceed with their visit. Employees will be asked the same questions before each shift.

  • Have you had close contact with or cared for someone diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last 14 days?
  • Have you been in close contact with anyone who has traveled within the last 14 days outside of Canada?
  • Have you experienced any cold or flu-like symptoms in the last 14 days (including fever, cough, sore throat, respiratory illness, difficulty breathing)?
  • Have you attended any mass gatherings in the last 14 days where proper health and safety protocols were not used?
     

How will the AGO respond if someone who’s recently been inside the building later tests positive for COVID-19?

If we become aware that a person who has recently been inside the AGO later tests positive for COVID-19, we will take swift and decisive steps to limit the risk to our visitors, employees, volunteers and the general public. We will:

  • Follow the guidance of public health officials
  • Decide on how best to carry out any necessary additional deep cleaning and sanitation, which might include temporarily closing the AGO
  • Notify employees, visitors, and other entrants to the Gallery who may have had close direct contact with the individual and advise those people to self-isolate for a period of 14 days and follow guidance from public health officials
  • Notify, whenever appropriate, the AGO community via email, our e-newsletters, social media channels, and our website that a person (whom we will not identify) who had been in the Gallery on a specific date later tested positive for COVID-19
  • Communicate closely with public health officials, providing them with information relevant to their investigation of the case, wherever necessary or required by law<

As we safely reopen the AGO to Members, Annual Pass Holders and the public, the health and safety of everyone entering the Gallery is of paramount importance. We have and will continue to be guided by the advice of public health officials.

Will my personal information be shared with public health officials?

From time to time, the AGO might be asked to share the contact information of anyone entering the building with government officials, to support public health efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 (for example, to help with contact tracing). The AGO is committed to protecting the privacy of everyone entering the building, and will only retain personal information for so long as is necessary to comply with applicable law.

What are the AGO’s Customer Service Policies?

In accordance with the (Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act) AODA Customer Service Standard, the AGO has a series of policies and procedures that deal specifically with the following issues:

  • assistive devices;
  • service animals;
  • support persons;
  • alternate means of communication;
  • training for employees and volunteers;
  • feedback mechanisms;
  • communicating temporary disruptions in service.

To further enable the visiting experience, the AGO also offers front-of-line access to our visitors with disabilities. Please visit our Customer Service Policies web page for more information.

Has the AGO made any changes to its galleries and public spaces?

Yes, we have made several changes to help maintain a healthy and safe environment for everyone. Museum seating has been removed; coat check, the Kusama Infinity Mirror Room, Weston Family Learning Centre and the Dr. Mariano Elia Hands on Centre are temporarily closed.

To help maintain social distancing, gallery capacity has been reduced significantly; signage throughout the building – in elevators, in gallery spaces, in hallways and on stairs – will advise visitors of how many people can be in any one space at a time. Visitors may be asked to wait before entering a part of the Gallery if it has reached capacity. In bathrooms where more than one stall is present, every other stall and sink will be closed to assist with distancing.

Elevators will be in service on Level 1, Level 2 and Level 4. Signage will advise visitors of capacity restrictions. Visitors are encouraged to use the stairs where possible.

Is the E.P. Taylor Library & Archives open to the public?

No. The E.P. Taylor Library & Archives has suspended its public hours, but is providing reference service by email: library.archives@ago.ca. The library catalogue remains accessible online at http://library.ago.net

Will I be able to shop and dine at the AGO?

shopAGO’s physical store is open every Thursday to Sunday, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Social distancing measures will be in effect, and a curated selection of merchandise will be available. Contact information for anyone entering the store is required to support public health efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 (for example, to help with contact tracing). Don’t forget, you can always shop online. AGO Members, please visit Members login page before shopping online.

The AGO Bistro is open for takeout only with a selection of grab-and-go items including coffee, pastries, salads and more. Order ahead for easy pickup. The Café AGO and the Espresso Bar in Galleria Italia are closed. The Norma Ridley Members’ Lounge is also closed.

Will the AGO be booking Group Visits?

The AGO is not hosting groups at this time. You can email Group Sales directly with any questions. To help maintain social distancing rules, we encourage anyone visiting the AGO to keep their “social circles” to a maximum of 4 people.

How will the AGO maintain proper health and safety measures?

For the immediate future, only employees that are necessary to making your visitor experience safe and engaging will be working inside the Gallery. They will be required to complete a daily health questionnaire before entering the building. They will be following all health and safety procedures, including wearing masks and staying two (2) metres apart. Any employee feeling ill will be asked to stay home.

To ensure a safe environment, the AGO has doubled the number of cleaning staff on site and cleaning schedules have been increased. High traffic and high touch areas – including elevators, hallways, doors, handrails, and bathrooms - are being disinfected and cleaned multiple times per day.

Hand sanitizing stations have been installed near the front entrance of the building and visitors are encouraged to use them upon entering and exiting the building. There are also hand sanitizing stations located throughout building.

Water fountains are temporarily out of order, but a water bottle filling station will be available for visitors on Level 1.

Has the AGO's exhibition schedule changed?

COVID-19 has had an impact on exhibition planning for museums around the world, and exhibition schedules at the AGO have been adjusted:

Will the expiry date of my Membership / Annual Pass change?

Our Members and Annual Pass Holders mean the world to us. Your unwavering support of the AGO is deeply appreciated – especially during this unprecedented time. To ensure our Members and Annual Pass Holders can continue to enjoy all the great experiences the Gallery has to offer as we safely reopen, we are prepared to offer an extension to your expiry date to reflect the length of time you’ve missed during our closure. We can't wait to welcome you back!

Please contact us via email at contactus@ago.ca with any questions, concerns or requests about your General Membership or Annual Pass and we will respond as soon as possible.

Curators’ Circle and AGO Next: In recognition of their philanthropic support, Curators’ Circle and AGO Next members will receive an additional tax receipt in lieu of a membership extension, reflecting the value of benefits not received during the AGO’s closure.

Corporate Members: to honor our members, Corporate Members will have the opportunity to extend their membership to reflect the length of time they've missed during our closure or receive 10 tickets to the AGO. For more information or questions, please contact Madeleine Dalkie (madeleine.dalkie@ago.ca) or call 416-979-6660 x 6292.

Has AGO Art Camp, summer 2020 been impacted?

On May 29, we announced the cancellation of AGO Art Camp, summer 2020. This decision has been made in consideration of the recommendations made by public health officials and the best advice from our fellow camp colleagues and members of the Ontario Camp Association. Our foremost responsibility will always be the safety and welfare of our campers, employees and volunteers.

Registrants will be receiving a full refund of all camp charges. This includes camp fees, extended care fees and meal plan fees.

Check in regularly at AGO.ca for activities, videos and other great content to keep your creativity flowing. Please share your creations with us using the hashtag #AGOmakes, we'd love to see them. And, stay tuned for new online opportunities to learn, create and engage with the AGO this summer.

Will courses and programs be impacted by the closure?

The AGO’s online learning will continue during the closure!

While we are not able to see you in person, we are excited to welcome you virtually with our Virtual School Programs. You can still join us for a free live art education program, happening daily, Monday to Friday via Zoom.

Our team has been working on creating new online course offerings. All courses and one-day workshops are proceeding as planned.

You can also visit our Learn and Make page for some great art activities to do from home.

Many of our in-gallery performances have been cancelled and / or postponed during the temporary lockdown. Please visit our Programs and Events webpage for more information.

Will the AGO be offering more courses once you reopen?

Our team has been working on creating new online and outdoor course offerings. We are happy to announce our first round of courses, taking place Aug. 25 to 28. Please visit our Courses and Workshop page for more information. You can also visit our Learn and Make page for some great art activities to do from home.

I have questions about Curators' Circle, AGO Next, Corporate Membership or my donation to the AGO. Who can I contact?

If you are inquiring about your Curators' Circle or AGO Next membership, please contact Leah Rakopoulos by email or call 416.979.6660 x 6526. For donation inquiries, please contact Michelle Greenspoon by email or call 416.979.6660 x 6213. For Corporate Memberships, please email Madeleine Dalkie or call 416.979.6660 x 6292.

Is your Contact Centre open?

Due to staffing limits at this time, the Contact Centre is operating in a reduced capacity. Our phone lines are open Wednesday-Friday from 9 am – 5 pm. Please contact us via email at contactus@ago.ca with any questions, concerns, or requests and we will respond as soon as possible.

Limitation of Liability

Any public space where people come together, like the Art Gallery of Ontario, produces a risk of exposure to the coronavirus (COVID-19). Help keep each other healthy by following health & safety guidelines, maintaining social distancing, and wearing a mask or face covering during your visit to the AGO. By being in public spaces like the AGO you voluntarily assume the risks related to exposure.

 

 

 

ARTWORKS ABOVE: [1] Unknown, European. Portrait of a Lady Holding an Orange Tree Blossom (detail), mid-18th century. Oil on canvas, Overall: 80 × 56.2 cm. Purchase, 2020. [2] Otto Dix. Portrait of Dr. Heinrich Stadelmann (detail), 1922. Oil on canvas, Overall: 90.8 x 61 cm. Anonymous gift, 1969; donated by the Ontario Heritage Foundation, 1988. © Art Gallery of Ontario L69.2 [3] Rembrandt van Rijn. Portrait of a Lady with a Lap Dog (detail), c. 1665. Oil on canvas, Overall: 81.3 x 64.1 cm. Bequest of Frank P. Wood, 1955. © Art Gallery of Ontario 54/30 [4] Clarence Alphonse Gagnon, Untitled (Beach Scene) (detail), 1913. Oil on panel, 15.3 x 22.8 cm. Bequest of Stewart and Letty Bennett, Georgetown, 1982. Donated by the Ontario Heritage Foundation, 1988. L83.10. Image ©️ Art Gallery of Ontario.

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