Welcome to the Canadian Architecture blog!

Welcome to the first Canadian Architecture blog brought to you by the Malcolmites! We hope this blog will encourage those interested in Canadian architecture to talk (or more specifically, type) about architecture in Canada.

Featured Building

Featured Building
William Eckhardt House, Unionville, Ontario (1852)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The return home

Today we bade adieu to Saguenay and its rushing waters and returned to Toronto.
Above: The Saguenay River from atop the Arvida Bridge
We would like to extend our thanks to everyone who made this year's conference possible. Their hard work is greatly appreciated and everything ran very smoothly.

Perhaps the best news of the entire week is that, in Arivda, we found the soulmate of our ugly green rental car....

Above: our jelly bean of a rental car

Above: our jelly bean's long-lost love... and I don't mean Candace
I really hope those two crazy kids make it!

Blogging live from the banquet

The banquet was a delightful and delicious success. As you can see from the photo above, the torch of conference organization was passed from Lucie back to Peter - and by torch, I of course mean lobster, now adorned with an aluminum 'A' for Arvida.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

SSAC Day 4: The Final Conference Day

So far we've had a great time in Chicoutimi and Arvida; last night we walked down to the water and along the boardwalk, followed by an amazing pasta dinner at Artis - highly recommended! We started the day today with our usual tasty Quebec breakfast and then were off to hear some early morning papers dealing with architectural decor, followed by modern architectural exhibitions, and then lunch - tourtieres, salad and lovely desserts!
The AGM was extremely eventful this year. Peter did an amazing job as President residing over the meeting, Barry's title was clarified - he is now the VP in charge of Membership, Candace resigned as Ontario Representative in order to accept a new position as News & Views Editor on the Board, and Jess assumed the position of Ontario Representative - Congrats Jess and welcome to the SSAC Board of Directors!

SSAC: the papers

The entire conference has been jam-packed full of excellent papers. Candace hosted a session titled "Urban and Villages Churches" that consisted of 9 different papers that were broken down into 3 sessions over two days. The first two sessions were yesterday and in the first, we heard about the evolution of the features of St James' Anglican Church in Stuartville (Kingston, Ontario), as well as from Candace about the small-town churches of 19th-century Ontario architect Henry Langley.

We also heard about Montreal architect Joseph Venne's St-Enfant-J├ęsus, Montreal and its relation to la Chartreuse as well as from Barry about the standardization of mid-20th century church plans and materials. In the second session we heard about the heritage values assigned to the churches in the Montreal borough of Verdun and about the adaptive reuse of churches across Quebec (from restaurants to climbing gyms!).

In the third and final session today, we heard about a modernist church of mixed materials including poured concrete, stone and glass in Goderich, Ontario, adaptations in wood of Gibbsian preaching boxes in 18th-century Nova Scotia and from Malcolm (via Candace) about the work of Gordon W. Lloyd, a little-known church architect who worked mainly in present-day south-western Ontario.

Otherwise, we attended a variety of sessions covering a wide variety of topics, the current research session included an update on Gothic Revival houses from Jess, the building of Arts and Crafts houses across the country, and the use of laser technology to map various aspects of buildings. Other sessions covered the curation of architectural exhibits, heritage issues, architectural decor and aspects of company town planning.

The sessions have run very smoothly, thanks to excellent organization.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

SSAC day 2: Day trip to Arvida

After a morning of great papers, we all hopped on a bus from Chicoutimi to Arvida.  Our first stop was (of course) the pub for lunch where we were warmly welcomed by the owner of the Brasserie d'Arvida and Arivida's alderman. With full stomachs we headed to the Arvida bridge - built of aluminum in 1950.
Above: part of the group at the Arvida bridge

Following this, we went into town to check out the houses of Arvida or, as it is also known, "the city built in 135 days."  The town was designed as a company town for Alcoa in 1927 with a plan for generously-sized workers' houses that were built using pre-fabricated elements assembled in a variety of different ways to produce homes that were similar, but all slightly different.  Here are a couple of examples below: 

See what I mean?

Despite the rain, we soldiered on and toured through the second, later phase of house-building in Arvida before arriving at the Salle Arthur-Vining-Davis (named after the name-sake of Arvida - Ar-Vi-Da... get it?) for the exclusive premiere of the "Memoires d'Arvida" exhibit accompanied by a wine and cheese reception.

Overall, a drizzly day, but very interesting and informative!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

First Day in Quebec for SSAC

Today we woke up bright and early and flew from Toronto to Quebec City.  In true Malcolmite fashion, we hit the ground running and began our day of visits pretty much right after picking up our ugly green car.  Before heading up to Chicoutimi for the conference, we spent some time doing a whirlwind tour of Vieux Quebec.

Notre-Dame-des-Victoires, Quebec City

We were fortunate enough to have a beautiful sunny day to explore the UNESCO World Heritage site so we could check out the 17th century houses, some churches and the Chateau Frontenac (AND to allow us to enjoy some patio-poutine and la tire).

Maison Chevalier with Chateau Frontenac behind it on the hill

Following this, we drove to Chicoutimi for the beginning of the conference.  We will be posting more of our photos from Quebec City soon, but I have to give my paper in the morning and should probably get some sleep!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

St Stephen's in the spring

I snapped this shot of St Stephen's-in-the-Fields, Toronto about 2 weeks ago. When I walked by yesterday, the facade was barely visible because of all the leaves! I guess all this rain is good for something. It's not the best picture, but there probably won't be a better one until the fall or winter.

Monday, May 9, 2011

SSAC conference program

If anyone is interested, the program for the upcoming 38th annual conference for the Society of the Study of Architecture in Canada (May 25-28) can be found on the SSAC website.  It looks like there will be a wide variety of topics covered and it is shaping up to be a really great conference (as always).

We will be blogging regularly from the conference, so don't worry if you can't make it!