Monthly Archive: December craf
Continuing my geographically rooted exploration of the Canadian Decorative Arts Collection, as the year of the dubious Canada 150 draws to a close, I come to the West, and am going to highlight some objects from our collection here from each of Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia all in one post.
One of my favorite things to think about when studying craft objects is the way in which they can teach us about the place where they were made, in both sociocultural and environmental aspects. Most often craft objects are examined from the sociocultural perspective, but the environmental perspective is important. Crafts are objects made in places, with natural resources. The story of some craft objects can teach us a great deal about the natural world and how human beings use the products of the natural world.
Mahone Bay is a beautiful town just south of Halifax, on the eastern shore of Nova Scotia. I stopped there on a holiday with my family this summer, and was charmed by the sheltered harbour, the tall trees, and the lovely shops. It was a perfect place to stretch our legs and eat some ice cream. When we were there, I noticed that we drove by Amos Pewter, and smiled at the memory of a Christmas ornament made of pewter that I once received as a gift from a dear friend.
The Canadian Decorative Arts section of the Royal Ontario Museum has a reasonable doll collection, featuring both folk and commercially made dolls. Primarily the dolls represent the backgrounds of Anglophone and Francophone early Canadian settlers, like this handmade dancing doll from Quebec, and this knitted doll from Ontario. Both dolls date from the late 1800s/early 1900s. I should clarify that when I talk about the Canadian collection, I am discussing the collections devoted to immigrants and settlers. There are several dolls in the First Nations collection.