January 15th, 2021

Refugee exhibit one of four new exhibitions at Galt

By Jensen, Randy on October 1, 2020.

An example of an emergency shelter used by the UNHCR in Africa is part of the displays of the Refuge Canada exhibition on now at the Galt Museum. Herald photo by Ian Martens @IMartensHerald


The Galt Museum & Archives will be hosting a travelling bilingual exhibition produced in English and French by the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 about the experiences of refugees and Canada’s place in the experiences of refugees, which is more mixed than people may realize.

“We are really pleased to be presenting the Refuge Canada exhibition,” says the Galt’s curator, Aimee Benoit, in a news release. “It is a powerful exhibition that explores both darker themes such as fear and loss; and stories of hope, resourcefulness, courage and determination.”

The exhibition showcases oral histories and objects that move visitors through a typical journey that a refugee might encounter. The refugee experience is important to explore as a part of Canada’s immigration history and the country’s mixed record in welcoming refugees. Refuge Canada looks at injustices and challenges as well as the stories of success and contributions made by people who came to Canada as refugees.

The exhibition will draw visitors through its five themes: Life Before, Fear, Displacement, Refuge, and Life in Canada, with hands-on opportunities to connect with the content. Visitors can see a UNHCR tent up close, or view an inflatable boat similar to those used by refugees fleeing from Turkey to Greece. Look out a plane window as the shores of Canada approach and listen to refugees tell their stories throughout the exhibition. Refuge Canada will challenge and inspire as it brings visitors on a journey from darkness to hope, always calling into question preconceptions about what it means to be a refugee.

“Canada has had a mixed record in welcoming refugees, reacting generously to some while overlooking others,” said Dan Conlin, curator, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21. “Refuge Canada provides the context for Canada’s place in the global refugee crisis and brings to light the challenges faced by refugees in Canada. The exhibition also shares stories of success and contributions made by people who came to Canada as refugees.”

Meanwhile, three other exhibitions will also be on display at the Galt this fall, including: “Piikanikoan: Living under a Blackfoot Sky: A Modern Winter Count,” guest curated by Ira Provost; “Pockets of Possibilities,” guest curated by Kirstan Schamuhn; and “Marathon of Memories: 40 years of Terry Fox Run in Lethbridge,” curated by Bobbie Fox.

“We hope that visitors will enjoy discovering new and powerful ways of viewing and understanding the world, and invite their friends and families to join them here this fall and winter,” said CEO/ED Darrin J. Martens.

Visitors to the Galt can expect to wear masks while visiting the museum and will be encouraged to physically distance and wash or sanitize their hands frequently while visiting the museum to help curb the spread of COVID-19. Tickets to the Galt can be booked online at http://www.galtmuseum.com/visit.

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