Monday, April 16, 2007


Capital Modern: Edmonton Architecture and Urban Design 1940 - 1969

Like many cities across North America, Edmonton, Alberta has a wealth of modern architecture that is under-appreciated, yet significant. In fact, Edmonton was a leader in modern building during the period from post-World War II to the 1970s due to the oil boom that spurred development and created a desire to be progressive. The exhibition highlights modern design from the small scale of furniture, art, single family homes to the urban planning scale. A series of archival photographs, drawings and models, as well as new photography by James Dow will show how Edmonton led the nation at the time.

The opening of the exhibition will be preceded by a symposium on Making the Modern with speakers that include Kenneth Frampton, John Patkau, Fred Valentine, Brian MacKay-Lyons, Brigitte Shim, and Trevor Boddy.

The exhibition takes place at the Art Gallery of Alberta, located at Enterprise Square, #100 - 10230 Jasper Ave, Edmonton, Alberta. Phone: 780-422-6223 for more information.


Making the Modern is a symposium that precedes the A.G.A. exhibition. Doors Open Alberta public tours will explore Modernism, a very diverse 20th Century world-wide cultural movement, and how modernist architecture can be better understood and appreciated by the public. Invited architects and critics will present their views on Modernism and the influences that have directed and informed their careers. The Symposium will tie into the AGA Capital Modern Exhibition and Open Doors Alberta public tours with the aim to develop an understanding of and appreciation for our post-war buildings, the architects who created them and the architectural culture of the time.

Thursday, June 7, 7 pm

Kenneth Frampton Keynote Address + Special Reception

Location: Hall 12, Shaw Conference Centre, 9797 Jasper Avenue

Friday, June 8, 8:00 am – 5:30 pm

Making the Modern Symposium

Location: Muttart Hall, Alberta College, 100500 MacDonald Drive, Edmonton, Alberta

8:00 - 8:30 am Registration /Breakfast
8:30-9:15 am Introductions & Welcome Remarks
9:15-10:30 am John Patkau
10:30- 10:45 Coffee Break
10:45 am - 12 pm Fred Valentine
12-1 pm LUNCH (provided)
1-2:15 pm Brian MacKay-Lyons
2:15- 2:30 Coffee Break
2:30 – 3:45 pm Brigitte Shim
3:45- 4:15 pm Nutrition Break
4:15 – 5:30 pm Panel Discussion moderated by Trevor Boddy
5:30 - 7:00 dinner (0n your own)
7:00 – 9:00 pm Capital Modern Exhibition Opening Reception (at the Art Gallery of Alberta, 100-10230 Jasper Avenue -in the old Hudson's Bay Department store!)

Symposium Registration Fees


$250 Alberta Association of Architects members (includes a complimentary copy of the exhibition catalogue)
$220 General Public
$175 Art Gallery of Alberta and M.A.D.E. in Edmonton Members
$100 Students (Students must provide a photocopy of valid student ID with registration form)

Kenneth Frampton Keynote Address + Reception ONLY

$50 General Public
$40 AGA + MADE Members
$25 Students

Contact the Art Gallery of Alberta for further information at (780) 422.6223 or email

Download a registration form here

Trevor Boddy Biography

Vancouver-based critic and curator Trevor Boddy has written on architecture and cities for The Vancouver Sun, Ottawa Citizen, Seattle Times and design magazines globally. His Vancouver column entitled “DWELLING” appears Fridays in The Globe and Mail, and at A contributing editor to Seattle’s Arcade and Toronto’s Canadian Architect magazines, his architectural criticism has earned the 2001 Western Magazine Award for arts writing, and Boddy was named co-winner of the 2003 Jack Webster Journalism Award for civic reporting.

A native Edmontonian, Trevor Boddy has degrees in Arts from the U. of A. and architecture from the U of Calgary. His first book Modern Architecture in Alberta was Canada’s first study of the evolution of modernism in a regional context. His independent critical monograph The Architecture of Douglas Cardinal was named “Alberta Book of the Year” and short-listed for the International Union of Architects prize for best book of architectural criticism published worldwide, and his essay “Underground and Overhead: Building the Analogous City” was included in the collection Variations on a Theme Park: The New American City and the End of Public Space, named “One of the most important books of 1992" by the Voice Literary Supplement. His career retrospective major exhibition “Telling Details: The Architecture of Clifford Wiens” is currently touring nationally, and for UBC’s Museum of Anthropology he recently curated the exhibition-as-event “A Dialogue of Cities,” a global gathering of architecture critics. Contact at

John Patkau Biography

John Patkau and his wife Patricia founded Patkau Architects in Edmonton in the late 1970s and are now based in Vancouver where they are recognized as one of Canada’s most awarded architectural firms. There are currently three principals: John Patkau, Patricia Patkau and Michael Cunningham, and three associates: David Shone, Peter Suter and Greg Boothroyd.

In the 1980s a series of early houses, schools, libraries and galleries helped to establish the firm’s design reputation. Success in a number of international design competitions in the 1990s set the stage for their current practice. Since then, their work has expanded to include a wide variety of building types. Projects vary in scale from gallery installations to urban planning, from houses to major urban libraries, from glassware and furniture design to research into sustainable practice and the future of educational technologies. Current work includes a 320 bed student housing project at the University of Pennsylvania, an ‘ecological’ hotel in Beacon, New York, the new central library in Montreal, an interdisciplinary Center for Music, Art and Design at the University of Manitoba, an aquatic ecosystems research lab at the University of British Columbia and a major addition to the Winnipeg Public Library.

Brian MacKay-Lyons Biography

Brian MacKay-Lyons practices in Halifax, Nova Scotia. MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects offers architectural and urban design services to residential and institutional clients in Canada and abroad. The firm was originally founded in 1985 by Brian MacKay-Lyons (FRAIC, Hon. FAIA, RCA) who formed a partnership with Talbot Sweetapple (MRAIC) in 2005. The firm has focused on houses, public buildings and urban design commissions which have accumulated to form an extensive and consistent body of work in the Maritimes. His modern regionalist architectural language combines the use of archetypal forms with local building practices that grow out of material culture. As a result, the work has both a local and international audience, as evidenced by the more than 100 publications. In addition, his buildings have received some 55 awards for design including five Governor General's Medals and four Canadian Architect Awards. Brian has lectured or taught at over 100 schools of architecture, including Dalhousie University where he is a professor.

Brigitte Shim Biography

Brigitte Shim is an award-winning architect who practices with her husband Howard Sutcliffe in the Toronto firm Shim-Sutcliffe. Born in Kingston, Jamaica, she has lived most of her life in Toronto and was trained at the University of Waterloo with degrees in Environmental Studies and Architecture. She has taught a broad range of graduate and undergraduate studios. Brigitte is a member of the 2007 Aga Khan Architecture Awards jury. In 2006, she was an invited speaker at the 10th Annual International Aalto Symposium in Jyvaskyla, Finland and was the 2005 Eero Saarinen Visiting chair at Yale University. She was the 2002 Visiting Professor at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Switzerland, 2001 Henry Bishop Visiting Chair in Architecture and Visiting Bicentennial Professor in Canadian Studies at Yale University and an invited visiting professor at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design in 1996 and 1993. She has lectured throughout the United States, Canada, New Zealand and Europe.

Fred Valentine Biography

Fred Valentine has practiced architecture since 1963, except for an intervening year at Harvard (1965). He is currently a principal in Stantec Architecture. Fred was Design Associate at John B. Parkin Associates and the successor firms of NORR, and Parkin Architects from 1966 to 1978. Prior to joining Stantec he was design partner of the Calgary firm CPV. His work focuses principally on the institutional and corporate sectors and was recently the subject of a retrospective exhibition at the Triangle Gallery in Calgary. Fred has made a significant contribution as an architect in Alberta, designing buildings that play an integral part in the fabric of public life. He has authored a diversity of well-recognized projects including the Nova (now Nexen), TransAlta and Calgary Herald corporate office buildings in Calgary; the University of Calgary’s Scurfield Hall and Rozsa Centre; Studio 'E' - a Composer's Studio - at the Leighton Artists Colony; the Jeanne & Peter Lougheed Building at the Banff Centre; the Library Information Network Centre at the University of Lethbridge; Canada Olympic Park XV Olympic Winter Games facilities; the rebuilding of the Alberta Hospital Ponoka Psychiatric Centre and the refurbishment of the Jubilee Auditoria in both Edmonton and Calgary. He is a Fellow of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, and has been a visiting critic at the Universities of Waterloo, Toronto, Ryerson and Calgary.

Keynote Address by Kenneth Frampton!

Kenneth Frampton Keynote Address + Special Reception

Thursday, June 7, 7 pm
Hall 12, Shaw Conference Centre, 9797 Jasper Avenue

Kenneth Frampton trained as an architect at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, London. He has worked as an architect and as an architectural historian/critic in England, Israel and the United States. He is currently the Ware Professor of Architecture at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University, New York. His books include Modern Architecture: a Critical History (1980), Modern Architecture and the Critical Present (1980), Studies in Tectonic Culture (1995), American Masterworks (1995), Le Corbusier (2002) and Labor, Work and Architecture (2002). An updated and expanded fourth edition of Modern Architecture: A Critical History will be released in the summer of 2007.