Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure

Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure
Saturday January 19 – Sunday March 31, 2013

History of Bling told in Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

January 18, 2013 – HALIFAX, NS – An exhibition on the history of bling opens at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia (AGNS) this weekend. Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure runs to March 31st telling the little known 150 year old story of Nova Scotia and its relationship with gold.

Co-curated by Shannon Parker, Curator of Collections at the AGNS and Debra McNabb, Director at the Museum of Industry, this multifaceted exhibition was inspired by the discovery and identification of 15 watercolours by Frederick B. Nichols, rare paintings that document the first of Nova Scotia’s three gold rushes, as well as other industrial landscapes around Halifax. An American engraver and mining engineer, Nichols moved to Nova Scotia in 1865 because of his interest in our gold fields, and worked here as a chemist, mining engineer and professor of geology.

This bilingual exhibition explores the story of Nova Scotia gold, from its geology and mining history to the millions of people around the world who tuned in for news updates during the Moose River Disaster of 1936.

Sponsored by Kinross Gold Corporation the exhibition also features an extensive series of oil sketches by the Group of Seven and all manner of gold items including a Nobel Prize, Anne Murray’s gold record for Snowbird, gold jewellery crafted by Nova Scotian artisans and a stunning collection of gold medals from Nova Scotian athletes.

Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure is a partnership with the Museum of Industry in Stellarton and incorporates a travelling exhibition, a virtual exhibit – funded by the Virtual Museum of Canada - to be launched Spring 2013, a school program and a study tour. The exhibit also includes contributions from the Nova Scotia Museum, the Department of Natural Resources, Minerals Branch, and Nova Scotia Archives.

Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure won't fail to bring some sparkle into your life! Follow us on Facebook or on Twitter @ArtGalleryNS  #AGNSGold


Honourable Leonard Preyra, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage:

“The search for gold has had, and continues to have, a profound impact on the individuals and communities involved in its exploration and mining,” said Communities, Culture and Heritage Minister Leonard Preyra. “I want to thank the contributors and the staff at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and the Museum of Industry for giving Nova Scotians an opportunity to get to know the role gold has played in our province’s history, culture and economic development.”

Ray Cronin, Director & CEO, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia:

“I am pleased that the AGNS was able to partner with our colleagues in the Museum Network to create this exhibition, and want to thank the sponsor, Kinross, for their support of our programming. I’d also like to acknowledge Frank Sobey, whose initial donation of the Frederick Nichols watercolours to AGNS was the impetus for this exciting project.”

Shannon Parker, Curator of GOLD: A Nova Scotia Treasure:

“The creation of this exhibition was a collaborative exercise between very difference disciplines – geology, history, industrial heritage, sports, and art – that culminated in an incredibly rich exhibition. It’s very rare to create such a complete narrative in which the art and the artists are an integral part.

For the AGNS venue, we’ve naturally expanded the art component to explore landscape sketches and paintings in Canadian art history, premiering the full collection of the Nichols watercolours and examining an extensive series of oil sketches by the Group of Seven.”

Ed Opitz, Vice-President, Corporate Responsibility Kinross Gold Corporation:

“Kinross is proud to sponsor this exhibit, which captures the important historic and cultural role that gold mining has played in Nova Scotia in particular, and Canada in general. This rich collection demonstrates that the wealth generated by gold mining can’t be measured in dollars alone.”


Media Preview: Friday January 18th at 10.30am. A chance for media to preview the exhibition, and meet the curators.
Evening Reception: Friday January 18th at 7:00pm. Members and Invitation Only Event.
Open to Public: Saturday January 19th to Sunday March 31st.
Hours: Wednesday to Friday 10:00am - 9:00pm (Thurs 5:00pm - 9:00pm is BMO Free Access Thursday), Saturday 10:00am - 5:00pm, Sunday 12:00 noon - 5:00pm. Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays (except for pre-arranged group and school tours)
School Groups: To book a free Canaccord School Tour, please call Laura Carmichael, Assistant Curator of Education at 902-424-6314,
Public Programming: Gold Curatorial Talk with Curators Shannon Parker, AGNS and Debra McNabb, Museum of Industry - Sunday February 10 at 2:30pm; Telus Family Sunday - All Things GOLD - Sunday February 17, 1:00-4:00pm
Admission is $12 full price; $10 senior; $7 student; Youth $5; AGNS Members and children under 5 free. Admission is free every Thursday 5-9pm courtesy of BMO Financial Group.

Images from Gold: A Nova Scotia Treasure are posted on the AGNS website - (Halifax, AGNews tab, Media Centre) 

About the partners

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia is the largest art museum in Atlantic Canada. With locations in downtown Halifax and downtown Yarmouth, the Gallery houses the Province’s art collection and offers a range of exhibitions and programming. For information:

Museum of Industry
The Nova Scotia Museum of Industry in Stellarton is Atlantic Canada’s largest museum for visitors to discover the people, places and machines of our industrial past. Acres of exhibits and interactive displays, featuring 30,000 artifacts, highlight how technology – and people – worked throughout the province’s history. The Museum of Industry is the best place to find out what “Made in Nova Scotia” really means.


For information contact: Donna Wellard | Marketing and Communications | Art Gallery of Nova Scotia | Phone 902-424-2903 | Cell 902-483-2019 |

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