Five Halloween Treasures from the MOV Collection

Happy Halloween from the Museum of Vancouver!

Here are Five fun items we've found in the MOV collection!

Paper pumpkin

1945 to 1962

Artefact History

This collection was donated by Mrs. Dorothy Sloan who, along with her husband J. Sloan, owned The Dance Novelty Bureau, located at 570 Granville Street. The store opened in 1931 and closed in 1962, changing management and location occasionally. See Documentation Specific File for more information taken from the Vancouver Directories.

Halloween at Retinal Circus handbill 1968



Artifact History

Donor has been called "the meister of Vancouver rock memorabilia." He is the owner of Vancouver's well-known Neptoon Records, which sells music, posters, and in particular, 1960s psychedelia. The Retinal Circus was a club on Davie Street that regularly booked psychedelic, blues, rock and rockabilly bands. Just like in San Francisco, local artists designed posters to announce shows from all kinds of bands of the day, including many of the ones from California and the rest of the USA. This handbill was designed Frank Lewis, an artist from Victoria, B.C. His career took him eastward in the late 1950s where he worked as a professional illustrator. In 1963, his work was placed in the prestigious New York Society of Illustrators Show. He returned to the West Coast in the late 1960s, where he primarily worked on large-scale projects such as murals and corporate commissions. Other well known Vancouver poster artists from this period were Bob Masse, Steven Seymour and Eric Fisher.

Martian Halloween costume


1945 to 1962

Artifact History

This collection was donated by Mrs. Dorothy Sloan who, along with her husband J. Sloan, owned The Dance Novelty Bureau, located at 570 Granville Street. The store opened in 1931 and closed in 1962, changing management and location occasionally. See Documentation Specific File for more information taken from the Vancouver Directories.

Halloween party invitation c. 1930


Artifact History

removed from Harper residence at 2950 West 8th ave Vancouver.

Poster: The Noise of Kitsilano

1970s (?), 1980s (?)

Artifact History

This flyer was kept by Ray and Patsy Chouinard.

Cool Aid was created by young people, including Ray Chouinard, to offer assistance to young people without "laying any heavy trips on them". It began by offering emergency housing, counselling and assistance during bad drug experiences. At this time, the 4th Avenue area was thronged with young adults who had left home and drifted towards the alternative scene in Vancouver. Patsy studied art in Saskatchewan until 1970, when she was recruited by the Cool Aid to come to Vancouver and establish a pottery factory as an employment project for "transient youth". She supervised the installation of a huge kiln at the Cool Aid Craft Factory, which was established in Yaletown with an L.I.P. grant. Patsy moved in to Cool Aid's main house on West 7th, near Arbutus. The Cool Aid house ran a daily "feed in". This required such huge quantities of rice, beans and vegetables that Patsy finally organized the EAT ME Food Co-op. Anyone could become a member and by collectively buying in bulk, they managed to reduce prices and created access to foods that were unavailable in regular supermarkets. In addition, Cool Aid ran a farm, "Little Switzerland", in the mountains behind Chilliwack.

Me and My Collection: Kyle Seller

Photo by Rebecca Blissett

If you summoned all the pinball wizards in Canada, you’d definitely cross paths with Kyle Seller of East Van Amusements. Currently, his collection of vintage pinball machines and arcade games  - which include Funhouse (1988), Cyclone (1988) and Jack-Bot (1995) - are on display at the Museum of Vancouver. And they’re not just there for looking at. You can play them too!

Kyle Seller has about 60 machines in total and has been collecting and building his business since he was a teenager. He bought his first machine when he was 16. What started as a fun social activity to release stress, has become a successful business that allows Seller to share his passion with Vancouverites. He restores pinball machines and rents out pop-up arcades throughout the city.

Seller’s love for pinball comes from all angles. He finds the skill-based game more challenging and unpredictable (than video games) but also admires the craft, art and music that goes hand-in-hand with pinball. “The games I like best are from the mid to late ‘80s and use hand-drawn art… it cannot be matched today,” Seller says.

To celebrate these beloved games, MOV will be hosting pinball events on October 6 and 13, and November 1.  First, Seller - along with international pinball tournament champion Robert Gagno - will be participating in an enticing Q&A session, Between the Bumpers, moderated by Tommy Floyd. On October 13, the public can get their game on with our happy hour event and pinball tournament TILT! Public Pinball Tournament - hosted by Seller and local pinball tournament director Rob Moller. Lastly, MOV is hosting a screening of Wizard Mode - a documentary about Robert Gagno and his passion for pinball.


Me and My Collection: Art Lingren

Art Lingren. Photo by Rebecca Blissett

On Tuesday, August 23 the Museum of Vancouver hosted another "Me and My Collection" event. Tuesday's in depth presentation featured fly fishing expert and collector, Art Lingren. Lingren shared his stories and experiences fishing across BC, Alaska, Washington and Oregon. Slides displayed various tackle tying techniques and styles.

Lingren's detailed collection of antique tackles are currently on display at MOV as part of the exhibition, All together Now: Vancouver Collector's & Their Worlds. Learn more about Lingren's collection with this exclusive interview:

Q&A with Art Lingren

Why do you collect?
Fly fishing has a rich heritage going back centuries, much of it British. I collect items that connect me with that rich British and British Columbian heritage.

I have become what many consider an authority on B.C. fly fishing history, using the knowledge I’ve gained to write books and articles about B.C. flies, fly tying, fly fishing equipment, fly fishing pioneers and the waters they fished.

How do you collect? 
I select items from sources in the fly fishing community, such as fly shops, antiquarian booksellers, and tackle dealers. Also, I belong to fly fishing clubs and organizations whose members often have items I can acquire through them.

How does your collection relate to you?
I value my fly fishing heritage. Collecting these items connects me to my past and, more specifically, to great B.C. anglers such as General Money, Tommy Brayshaw, and Roderick Haig-Brown; and it gives me a place where I belong. 

How does your collection relate to Vancouver?
Vancouver has been a hub for the fly fishing community for many years. The Totem Fly Fishers, one of two clubs I belong to, is British Columbia’s oldest, founded by Vancouver fly fishers back in the 1960s.

How does collecting you connect with people?
Most of my fishing activities take place through social media, weekly lunch gatherings, monthly meetings, and outings to rivers and lakes with other fly fishers. Through these associations I connect with other collectors.

The tip of the iceberg

People like collecting. It's probably is connected back to our ancestors' hunter/gatherer days.

These days, we collect all sorts of of things. For some it's shoes, for others it's figurines. A lot of people have grandmothers who collected spoons or plates, or uncles that collected coins and stamps. There's even someone who collects computer viruses.

While some people are definitely hoarders, the displays that make up the MOV's new exhibition are comprised of "serious" enthusiasts who collect their obsession(s) with intent.

ALL together NOW: Vancouver Collectors & Their Worlds features 20 rare, beautiful and unconventional collections. There's artificial eye balls and prosthetics, corsets and drag queen costumes, pinball machines and juke boxes. These are not your typical collections!

The following images have been shared by visitors of the exhibition, illustrating just the tip of the iceberg in regards to the thousands of objects on display.



Self explanatory #typewriter #captionless #vancouver #travel

A photo posted by Charmayne Leontowich (@luckycharmayne) on


Very hard to choose which photo from the @museumofvan opening tonight. So here is a tiny portion of the toy section.

A photo posted by Georgia Straight (@georgiastraight) on


Nostalgia trip. #vancouverisawesome #vancity #mycollectionatmov #dailyhivevan #hellobc

A photo posted by Luigi Conti (@igiconti) on



A photo posted by monarch5 (@monarch5) on


This gem is currently on exibition at the Museum of Vancouver!! OMG!! Blast from the past!!

A photo posted by Reuben Bibera (@inocent24) on

Collectors Amongst Us

Viviane Gosselin's picture

Call to Collectors for Upcoming Exhibition at the Museum of Vancouver

We want to know about your collection, the idea behind it and how it all started.

The Museum of Vancouver is working on a temporary exhibition project that will feature Vancouver-based collectors and their collections. The museum wants to explore the mindset of these passionate “hunters and gatherers” and showcase their favourite pieces.

The collections might focus on Vancouver but they don’t have to. We are interested in learning how the collections came to be and what they bring to the lives of the people who create them. We are looking for interesting, beautiful, rare, unconventional collections: small, big, noisy, musical, historical, digital, analogue – surprise us!

This project will generate new discussion about the future of collecting, and the role of private collectors as memory keepers and makers.

Please fill out this form (PDF) and email back to Viviane Gosselin:

The deadline for submitting your collection profile is September 30. 2015.

Photo above from Lyanne Smith's collection.

Museum Monday: Cloche Hat

It’s Museum Monday!  There’s a crispy chill in the air and the thought of cherry blossoms to come . . . It makes me yearn for a sweet rose cloche like this lovely Vancouver-made millinery from the 1920s MOV collection. Want to stay ‘jazz hot’ and flapper fabulous? Learn to flirt in a ‘peek-a-boo’ cap or test your Charleston at a “Rhythm City Strut” - who's dancers will be performing at the opening night for “Art Deco Chic” (Opening March 8, 2012)…Then come celebrate your vintage swagger with us at the MOV. 

If you're interested in learning even more about the upcoming exhibition, then check out this great video with Art Deco Chic curators Ivan Sayers and Claus Jahnke.

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