Exhibits and Programs of The Museum

by Tomothy Barrett
Musuem Exhibits

The Fabric of Daily Life

This exhibit from the museum’s collection showcases artifacts made from fabric and leather. Items on display include quilts, period clothing and several examples of First Nations handiwork.

This show was largely shaped by the selection process.

The museum has many storage boxes containing fabric and leather items. Opening each box was a process of discovery, like opening a box of presents or time capsules from the past. As the objects were revealed, two largely interrelated criteria for selection predominated. The first was visual appeal and the second was the degree of interest piqued by the item.

The degree of interest was often related to the source records for the item – being able to trace the history of ownership lends a human face to the object and adds credence to the act of collecting itself.

Thus the formal wear of Saskatchewan Justice William Lloyd Hipperson of Regina from the 1940s and 1950s, and the suit of longtime museum volunteer Myrt Severson purchased in Regina for her wedding on January 20, 1945 take on added significance.

Hipperson’s shiny, sharply-pointed, black Florsheim shoes – described by a volunteer as “pumpkin splitters” – were the rage at the time, and one of his shirts comes with the original box, Forsyth Formal Wear, in which it was sold.

Of course many items in the collection are seldom used or even seen today and often on first sight during the selection process elicited the question, “what is it?” Examples of such works include spats, dickeys, and kidney belts.

Aboriginal works selected from the collection are visually strong and have source history of interest.

An example is an intricately-beaded vest made between 1920 and 1935 at the Fishing Lake First Nation and bartered for store goods at nearby Lintlaw, Saskatchewan. Another is a rugged but beautifully-beaded, moose-skin jacket made in the 1930s at the Shoal Lake reserve near Nipawin.

The relationship between visual appeal and content became apparent during show organization with the integration of three otherwise disparate objects in a single display. The first is a fine example of a Log Cabin Quilt begun by a convalescing WWI veteran and finished in a quilting bee arranged by his mother.

The second is a pair of pillow shams made around 1900 with the following hand-sewn sayings “I slept and dreamed that life was beauty” and “I woke and found that life was duty.” The latter sham shows a woman sweeping the house. To complement the quilt and shams displayed on a bed with pillows, there is also a dust cap often worn by women at the time in their house-cleaning chores.

Permanent Exhibits

The Glass Wheatfield

The museum is home to a unique and internationally recognized work of art by Saskatchewan artist Jacqueline Berting. The Glass Wheatfield – A Salute to Canadian Farmers – is a sculpture that must be viewed in person. The Wheatfield celebrates and honors the heritage of prairie people. It is comprised of 14,000 individually crafted waist high stalks of glass wheat mounted in a steel base.

The “Building Community” Mural

Our “Building Community” mural was created by artist, Sherry Farrell Racette. The mural presents a non-traditional view of history, including men, women, and children in the story of the growth and development of our community.

The mural is installed in the pedway of the Frederick W. Hill Mall and is located on the mail level of 1835 Scarth Street, just below the Regina Plains Museum’s downtown gallery. The mural is available for public viewing during mall hours.

Upcoming Exhibits

Women of Influence

Organized by the Museums Association of Saskatchewan on the occasion of the Saskatchewan centennial, the show celebrates the efforts and accomplishments of Saskatchewan women spanning 100 years.

Some three years in the making, the project was unanimously embraced by MAS members as a “grassroots” way to honour women’s roles in the rural and urban communities, from the past and into the present, and from a wide range of endeavours.

Some 70 participating museums throughout the province have responded by selecting, researching, and providing information on a woman or women’s group to represent their area.

The information including both text and illustrations are provided on uniform panels. MAS has provided the training to museums for creating these panels.

Examples of women who are being honoured by the communities include: the Hon. Jeanne Sauvé, Canada’s first woman Governor General (1984-1990) put forward by the Prud’homme Multicultural Museum; Violet MacNaughton, the choice of the Harris Museum, was involved in the women’s suffrage movement; the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame & Museum is honouring Ethel Catherwood (Saskatoon), the first and only woman to ever win a gold medal at the Olympics in the sport of athletics; and, “Holy Breath” (ElizabethOgle, 1895-1994), a highly respected elder of the Lakota First Nation, is being honoured by the Wood Mountain Rodeo Ranch Museum.

Satellite Exhibits

Regina Police Station:

This exhibit was originally developed by the Police Service Librarian and was amalgamated into the Regina Plains Museum collection in 1997.

Visit the exhibit on the second floor of 1717 Osler Street and view the history and contributions of our police service here in the Queen City.

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