In the Artists' Footsteps
March 26 to October 16, 2016
Curator: Mora Dianne O'Neill
Discover Halifax’s art history through this unique exhibition and self-guided walking tour
Artists have left their footprints in every corner of Nova Scotia, and perhaps nowhere more than in Halifax itself.
Initially they wanted to present this New World settlement to the Old, but before the end of the eighteenth century, artists were satisfying local demand for portraits and landscapes. Along the way they have been responsible for several important milestones in Canadian art history. Richard Bulkeley, who built the first stone house in Halifax in 1759, also established the first art club in Canada. In 1830 and 1831, the first two art exhibitions in Canada graced the walls of old Dalhousie College on the Grand Parade. Joseph Brown Comingo, Canada's first native-born professional artist, lived and worked in Halifax. Botanical lithographs published here by Maria Morris in 1840 predate those of Agnes Fitzgibbon in Ontario by more than a quarter century. The Victoria School of Art and Design (today, NSCAD University) opened the first of its many doors in 1887, and in 1895 became the first co-ed public art school serving in Canada, and the second in North America, to appoint a woman principal, Katharine Norcross Evans.
Works in the exhibition will celebrate these, and other, artistic footsteps through history.