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Obsession: Sir William Van Horne's Japanese Ceramics
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Grade 3 - 12

The Curious Case of Sir William Van Horne

Bring your students to the Gardiner this fall to explore Obsession: Sir William Van Horne’s Japanese Ceramics. Discover the curious case of a controversial figure in Canadian history who was responsible for the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway, built on territory belonging to Canada’s Indigenous Peoples. Sir William Van Horne was an obsessive collector of Japanese pottery and amassed an impressive collection, documenting it through watercolours and note-taking. Introduce your students to the scientific method of the 19th and 20th centuries and this important period in Canadian history. The conversation will be challenging and rewarding.

  • Links: Canadian History, Science and Technology, Social Studies, English, The Arts, History and Geography
  • Studio project: Teacups

Students will get a tour of the exhibition followed by a hands-on clay workshop

Students will get an opportunity to sketch and explore the gallery in depth with guided observatio exercies, audio-visual material and discussion. In the afternoon students will partake in a hands-on clay class.


Program Details

$15*Full-Day Program
$9*Half-Day Program
$7Guided Tour
Free**Unguided Tour

Book a Visit

1. Tea bowl with design of baton, Kyoto ware, Kyoto, False seal of “Ninsei”, Edo-Meiji period, 19c., Stoneware, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts 1944.Ee.6, Adaline Van Horne Bequest

2. Seated Drummer, Tala-Tonalá style
Mexico, Jalisco
300 B.C. - A.D. 200
Earthenware with white on red slip paint
Gift of George and Helen Gardiner, G83.1.56

3. Shaman’s Head (II), 2006, Gift of the Museum of Inuit Art G16.13.8