Manitoba Historical Society
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Historic Sites of Manitoba: Winnipeg Art Gallery (300 Memorial Boulevard, Winnipeg)

Link to:
Photos & Coordinates | Directors | Sources

This four-storey building in Winnipeg was based on designs by local architect Gustava da Rosa, winner of a competition which saw over 475 entries from around North America. The Iceberg-style structure was built at a cost of about $4.5 million by the Bird Construction Company Limited between 1969 and 1971. Construction was funded, in part, through contributions from the federal government ($500,000), provincial government ($1.25 million), a citizens campaign ($1,076,000), and private donations ($854,000).

The Tyndall-stone building features a roof-level lounge and restaurant, 25,000 square foot main gallery, 300-seat auditorium, lecture and seminar rooms, gift shop, administration space, and storage facilities. To facilitate the handling and display of a vast works and exhibits, the building’s freight elevator measures 26 feet long, 14 feet wide, and 12 feet high. A private viewing was held on 24 September 1971 and the gallery was opened officially by Princess Margaret and her husband Lord Snowdon on 25 September during the royal couple’s visit. A crowd of some 3,000 people were on-hand for the opening. During her Royal visit in May 1974, she also unveiled a commemorative plaque was unveiled within the buildings foyer. The facility replaced the Winnipeg Art Gallery’s previous location in the Winnipeg Auditorium and its predecessor in the Industrial Bureau Exposition Building.

Among the items held in the collections of the Winnipeg Art Gallery is a First World War honour roll crafted by artist Lionel LeMoine FitzGerald for the Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire.

Photos & Coordinates

Winnipeg Art Gallery

Winnipeg Art Gallery (January 2015)
Source: Nathan Kramer

Winnipeg Art Gallery

Winnipeg Art Gallery (January 2018)
Source: George Penner

Winnipeg Art Gallery

Winnipeg Art Gallery (April 2018)
Source: Nathan Kramer

Inuit Art Centre under construction at the Winnipeg Art Gallery

Inuit Art Centre under construction at the Winnipeg Art Gallery (November 2020)
Source: George Penner

Princess Margaret unveiling the Winnipeg Art Gallery commemorative plaque

Princess Margaret unveiling the Winnipeg Art Gallery commemorative plaque (May 1974)
Source: Archives of Manitoba, CH 0276, Government Photographs, GR3552, 74-2840

Winnipeg Art Gallery commemorative plaque

Winnipeg Art Gallery commemorative plaque (April 2018)
Source: Nathan Kramer

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.88954, W97.15035
denoted by symbol on the map above

Directors

Period

Director

1974-1983

Roger L. Selby (?-1995)

First World War (IODE FitzGerald Honour Roll)

Name

Occupation

Service

Rank

Birth Date

Death Date

Samuel Williscraft Carley
[Next of Kin]

Salesman

2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles

Private

30 May 1881

12 April 1917

Cecil Ackroyd Falls
[Holy Trinity, Next of Kin]

Bank Clerk

3rd Brigade, Canadian Field Artillery

Gunner

15 December 1897

7 November 1917

Hevre Murray Grant MC
[Next of Kin, St. Lukes]

Accountant

52nd Battalion, Canadian Infantry

Captain

29 August 1891

28 October 1917

George David Lynch
[Osler Hammond Nanton, Next of Kin, St. Lukes]

Broker

16th Battalion, Canadian Infantry

Major

17 July 1882

8 October 1916

Herbert George Maybank
[Augustine, Kelvin]

Student

29th Battalion, Canadian Infantry

Student

4 July 1893

19 April 1916

See also:

Manitoba Organization: Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire (IODE)

Sources:

“Calling bids soon for new Art Gallery,” Winnipeg Free Press, 20 June 1969, page 3.

“Art Gallery tenders called,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 September 1969, page 34.

[Photo caption], Winnipeg Free Press, 14 July 1970, page 20.

[Photo caption], Winnipeg Free Press, 25 August 1970, page 2.

“Princess Margaret here in Sept.” Winnipeg Free Press, 20 July 1971, page 18.

“Princess crosses picket line,” Winnipeg Free Press, 24 September 1971, page 1.

“A new era for Manitobans begins ... September 25, 1971,” Winnipeg Free Press, 24 September 1971, page 8.

“Today is day one,” Winnipeg Free Press, 25 September 1971, page 10.

“Royal visit winds up quietly,” Winnipeg Free Press, 27 September 1971, page 12.

“Quiet Royal arrival starts five-day visit to Manitoba,” Winnipeg Free Press, 10 May 1974, page 4.

“Highlights from a busy Royal weekend,” Winnipeg Free Press, 13 May 1974, page 30.

“Former WAG director dies,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 May 1995, page 11.

We thank George Penner and Darryl Toews for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 6 May 2021

Historic Sites of Manitoba

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