Doris Shadbolt

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Doris Shadbolt
Born (1918-11-28)November 28, 1918
Preston, Ontario
Died December 22, 2003(2003-12-22) (aged 85)
Awards Order of Canada, Governor General's Award

Doris Shadbolt, OC, née Meisel, (November 28, 1918 – December 22, 2003) was a Canadian art curator, writer and co-ordinator of exhibitions.

Early life[edit]

Born in Preston, Ontario, Shadbolt attended the University of Toronto[1] where she studied Fine Arts as an undergraduate under painter Charles Comfort.[2] After graduating, she worked as a research assistant at the Art Gallery of Ontario (then the Art Gallery of Toronto) and the National Gallery of Canada.[3] She moved to Vancouver, British Columbia with her husband, painter Jack Shadbolt, in 1945.[3]


In Vancouver, Shadbolt started a long career with the Vancouver Art Gallery, starting first as a volunteer, then serving as a docent, curator, and director.[3] She curated several groundbreaking exhibitions, including "Art of the Raven" (1967), which showcased the work of First Nations artists. Her 1970 exhibition "New York 13" introduced Vancouverites to Robert Morris, Jasper Johns and Andy Warhol.[3]

Shadbolt was also an active art historian and biographer. Her biographies of Bill Reid and Emily Carr remain the authoritative books on the artists. She won several awards for her non-fiction; her Bill Reid won the 1987 Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize. She was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1976, and in 2000 received a Governor General's Award for her contributions to literature and the arts.[4]

The Shadbolt Centre for the Arts in Burnaby, British Columbia, is named for the Shadbolts, and the couple also started the Vancouver Institute for the Visual Arts (which was renamed the Jack and Doris Shadbolt Foundation after their deaths).[4]



  1. ^ "Doris and Jack Shadbolt". Special Collection. National Gallery of Canada. Retrieved 13 April 2014. 
  2. ^ "Doris Shadbolt fonds". MemoryBC. British Columbia Archival Information Network. Retrieved 14 April 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Doris Shadbolt". Vancouver in the Sixties. Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery. Retrieved 13 April 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Shadbolt, Doris Meisel". Encyclopedia of British Columbia. KnowBC. Retrieved 20 April 2014. 

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