Dr. Peter Spafford and Family
To acknowledge Dr. Peter Spafford’s generous gift of $250,000 to Remai Modern, a second-floor gallery in the museum is being named in memory of his father, Duff Spafford.
“Contributing to Remai Modern and having the Duff Spafford Gallery named for my father celebrates him and his interests,” says Dr. Spafford. “My father was very interested in the arts and culture. Everything associated with Remai Modern would make him very happy.”
Duff Spafford (1936-2014) grew up in Weyburn, SK, and through his life developed a deep respect for the province and its rural communities. He and his wife, Shirley, met while both were reporters for the Prince Albert Daily Herald. For more than 40 years, he was a well-known professor at the University of Saskatchewan, making notable contributions to political studies and research on elections. He had a strong intellect but was known for his friendliness, sense of humour and sage judgment.
Duff was extremely proud of his province and his university, and truly embodied what it was to be a Saskatchewanian. He was full of ideas and enthusiasms, and could always provide a joke, a fun fact or a story about any topic that may interest you — including sports, hockey, birds, or gardening. He read about any topic from science to pop culture, and collected antiques and art with a keen interest in the stories that these things told.
Duff Spafford’s strong, principled and pragmatic character embodies the Saskatchewan spirit, and his family is proud to celebrate his life.
Dr. Peter Spafford and his sister, Sarah Spafford-Ricci, have fond memories of attending children’s art classes at the former Mendel Art Gallery — predecessor to Remai Modern. Now a conservator of fine art, Spafford-Ricci says her father was “really connected to art and appreciative of the work I do. He was fascinated with the history of objects, what they say about the maker and the community.”
Remai Modern embodies the spirit of a growing city, and offers exceptional opportunities to experience art and culture right here at home, Dr. Spafford says. “It’s exciting to be able to introduce people to the arts on a big and ambitious scale.”