Image: Lyndoe Bench, Photo from Mary Ratcliffe Studio
CSDA/CCAD 'EXPORE' - Young Professionals & Creatives' Longevity-Minded Design
On Thursday, July 15, 2021 CSDA YP&C hosted a new series called 'EXPLORE' with Furniture Designer Mary Ratcliffe who discussed the birth of Mary Ratcliffe Studio. MRS is a Toronto-based contemporary furniture design studio committed to exceptional craftsmanship and creating pieces to be passed down through history. The recording for this lecture is available to members on the Members-only portal.
George III Silver Cake Basket, Charles Aldridge & Henry Green, London, 1792
CSDA/CCAD Sundays: Treasures in the Attic - 'All that Glitters is not Gold '
On Sunday, June 6, 2021 CSDA hosted a talk between collector Michael Crawley and silversmith and appraiser Ross Morrow of A.H. Wilkens about Mr. Crawley's family silver heirlooms.
The focus was on pieces presented including two 18th c, silver cake baskets (one English the other Irish) and a tea service dating from the William IV period. "In my mind they show beauty, craftsmanship and how the middle class aped the upper classes by the end of the Victorian era" said Mr. Crawley. The recording for this lecture is available to members on the Members-only portal.
Ornamentum 15th Anniversary Panel Discussion ‘Then and Now ‘
On Sunday, May 23, 2121 CSDA held a panel discussion Moderated by Rosalind Pepall, ‘Then and Now’ will feature panelists Erin Lynn McMullan, Alexandra McCurdy and Peter Larocque, as they look back over the last 15 years and discuss the landscape of decorative arts within Canada. Reexperience what it was like to create a new magazine then and discover the latest trends in the decorative arts field now, hear what the panelists are working on and what is happening around them.
Experience the talk HERE
CSDA/CCAD Sundays: If the Cups Could Talk: Pottery in Victorian Painting and Literature
On Sunday, May 2, 2021 CSDA held an online talk with Dr. Rachel Gotlieb. What can ceramics tell us about the virtue of a George Eliot heroine or a Dickensian hero? Rachel Gotlieb walk you through some well-known novels and paintings of the Victorian period to see how authors and artists used pottery and porcelain to provide insight into the characters they portrayed.
This richly illustrated talk will explain how depictions of ceramics played a central role in moralizing and decorating Victorian society. The recording for this talk is available to members on the Members-only portal.
Printed Textiles from Kinngait Studios mounted by the Textile Museum of Canada
On Saturday, March 27, 2021 CSDA and the Textile Museum of Canada presented the little-known story of a group of Inuit artists and printmakers who produced a collection of graphic textiles in Kinngait (Cape Dorset), Nunavut in the 1950s and '60s a period of social change that disrupted traditional language and relationships to the land. The exhibition is on at the TMC until June 1, 2021. The recording for this lecture is available to members on the Members-only portal.
CSDA/CCAD Sundays: Makers' Series - Wesley Harris, RCA
On Sunday, March 7, 2021 CSDA held its first of many Makers' talks. Participants listened to one of Canada's leading metalsmiths Wesley Harris. In this 'Makers Series', Wesley will highlight two smithing techniques represented in the creation of his tea service (photographed here). Additionally, Mr. Harris will discuss nature as a source of inspiration and how it appears in his work. The recording for this series is available to members on the Members-only portal.
CSDA/CCAD Sundays: Material Culture: What does it Include?
On February 7, 2021 CSDA held an online lecture with Dr. Michael Prokopow on the subject of Material culture as it relates both to a subject area and a methodology. This talk will consider the study of human-made and human-modified things and the ways that they are classified and why. Issues of function, decoration and style will be considered. The recording for this lecture is available to members on the Members-only portal.
CSDA/CCAD Sundays: Treasurers in the Attic: Personal Mementos from Spadina House
On January 10, 2021 CSDA held an online talk with James Thompson, a fifth-generation member of the Austin family, who built Spadina House and later donated it to the City and the Province. James will give us a glimpse into the story of Spadina House by sharing decorative arts objects and other items he acquired when the house transitioned from a family home into a public museum. The recording for this talk is available to members on the Members-only portal.
CSDA/CCAD Spotlight on Decorative Arts at Waddington's
On November 22, 2020 CSDA and Waddington's held an online event highlighting objects selected by CSDA and the Gardiner Museum's Young Patrons Circle members. Bill Kime, Sean Quinn and Hayley Dawson of Waddington’s lead a discussion surrounding the pre-selected objects, which will be included in Waddington’s upcoming Decorative Arts & Design Auction.
Ornamentum Exchange virtual talk with Rosalind Pepall & Dr Rachel Gotlieb discussion Talking to a Portrait: Tales of an Art Curator book - November 1, 2020. If you missed the presentation please you can access the recording here.
In these fifteen essays we encounter artists falling in and out of love, family tragedies, the creation of the Stanley Cup, the secrets of Tiffany, Antiques Roadshow, a rootless baroness, the design craze for aluminum, small Japanese boxes called kogos, watercolour sketchbooks of the Canadian north, a beautiful prayer room in Montreal, gondolas flying through windows in Venice, and Moscovites who love Goldfinger, Order your own copy of the book here. The recording is available to members on the Members-only portal.
The Legacy of the Bauhaus: Urban Upheaval and the Rise of New Vernaculars
On October 2, 2020 Professor Marcin Kezior, Director f the Centre for Cultural Landscapes - Willowbank School of Restoration Arts presented at the conclusion of CSDA/CCAD's 38th Annual General Meeting his observations on the illustrations of ornamentation and the spirit of the decorative arts did not subside during Modernism and industrialization, it was simply displaced. Modernist architects including Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, and Frank Lloyd Wright were influenced by vernacular artifacts, and movements such as Art Nouveau. Ornament did not go away, but was understood as the "celebration of a joint," the exuberance of material properties, constantly shifting light affects, a continuity with the vitality of nature, the expression of structural forces, and an alternate take on craft.
Collectors at Home
The CSDA/CCAD will be highlighting some of the beautiful, rare and/or sentimental pieces our members enjoy behind closed doors.
June 20, 2020 inaugural virtual event with guest curator Jennifer Franks, Art & Design Historian. Theme - From Utility to Life: Sculptural Decorative Arts - followed by Q&A with CSDA collectors.
35th Annual Symposium & Annual General Meeting
“Hat’s off” to Martha Deacon,Harriet Meacher,Linda BerkoandPaula Kennyfor organizing such a wonderful 35th Canadian Society of Decorative Arts Symposium, celebrating Canada’s 150th year!
Above is a photo of our distinguished Symposium participants posing as the Fathers of Confederation in front of Government House, known as Fanningbank in Charlottetown PEI.
34th Annual Symposium:
Tradition Redefined - The Decorative Arts in Contemporary Urban Context
September 29th - October 2nd, 2016
We organize an annual symposium featuring contributions from Canadian and International experts. We explore a different Canadian city each year and visit local heritage sites, artisan studios, cultural institutions and private collections.
‘St. Andrew’s, NB: Canada’s First Seaside Resort’ took place in St. Andrew’s-by-the-sea, October 1 - 4, 2015.
Scenic Views: Exploring the Historic, Cultural and Artistic Landscape of Niagara-on-the-Lake
Thursday, October 2 - Sunday, October 5, 2014
Image information: View of Fort Niagara by John Herbert Caddy, courtesy of the Niagara Historical Society & Museum
A selection of images from the 2014 Annual Symposium,