On November 29, 2018, OAG helped celebrate the 45th anniversary of the Firestone Collection of Canadian Art on becoming public.
The event bought together Mayor Jim Watson, Brenda Firestone, eldest child of the late O.J. Firestone and Isobel Firestone, along with OAG Board of Directors Chair Victor Duret and Director and CEO Alexandra Badzak.
All of them had a few kind and amazing words about the collection.
Here are some facts about the Firestone collection.
- Over 1600 works in the collection.
- Over half the works in the collection are by the members of the Group of Seven.
- There is an unusually high number of women artists represented in comparison to collections of Canadian art of the same era.
- The large majority were obtained directly from the artists, many of whom maintained relationships with the Firestone family.
- The Firestones collected works from Ontario, Quebec, Atlantic Provinces, Prairie Provinces, and Western Canada.
- The work was collected between the early 1950s and the mid-1980s.
- The donation of the entire collection to the Ontario Heritage Foundation was completed in 1973.
- It passed to the City of Ottawa in 1992, and was transferred to the Ottawa Art Gallery for exhibition and conservation.
- One of the stipulations by the Firestone family in donating the collection was “that the collection continue to be on display, accessible to the public, in the Greater Ottawa area.”
- It has been on continual exhibition rotation at the Ottawa Art Gallery since 1992.
- Public and educational programming such as artist talks, screenings and workshops also highlight the collection.
Check out the photos.