Cardinal in 2016
7 March 1934|
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
|Alma mater||University of British Columbia; University of Texas at Austin,|
|Projects||National Museum of the American Indian; Grande Prairie Regional College; Canadian Museum of History;|
Douglas Joseph Cardinal, OC (born 7 March 1934) is a Canadian architect based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Famous for flowing architecture marked with smooth curvilinear forms and influenced by his Aboriginal heritage as well as European Expressionist architecture, Cardinal is perhaps best known for his designs of the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, Quebec (1989) and the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. (1998).
Cardinal was born in Calgary, Alberta, the eldest of eight children of Métis, Blackfoot/Kainai, German and Algonquin heritage. He grew up in Red Deer, Alberta where he attended St. Joseph's Convent Residential School.
Cardinal opened his private practice in 1964, and the same year he was commissioned to design St. Mary's Church in Red Deer, Alberta. Construction was completed in 1968, and it has since been recognized as a prominent example in the history of Canadian architecture. In 2007 the church was featured on a Canada Post stamp series featuring four Canadian architects to commemorate the centennial of the Royal Architecture Institute of Canada (RAIC).
Beginning with his work on St. Mary's, Cardinal was one of the first North American architects to use computers to assist in the design process. His curvilinear designs reflect the landscape around them, so that people making use of the building can retain a sense of the surrounding land.
In 1993, he was hired by The Smithsonian Institution as the Primary Design Architect for the National Museum of the American Indian, or NMAI. The NMAI is situated on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., and directly faces the Capital of the United States of America. After contractual disputes, Cardinal was removed from the project in 1998 before it was completed, but he continued to provide input into the building's design.
In 2008, his firm was hired by the Kirkland Foundation to design a museum/convention center in Union City, Tenn. The Discovery Park of America was to be a unique structure housing a multi level museum with artifacts from across the nation as well as provide a place for large conventions/meetings for the community. Early in 2009 the firm's contract was terminated with the owner, and all construction activity was halted, due to undisclosed differences between the two parties.
Among the many projects Cardinal has completed in his career are the following:
Cultural Institute (1996) Oujé-Bougoumou, Québec
- St. Mary's Church (1968) Red Deer, Alberta
- St. Albert Place & City Hall (1976) St. Albert, Alberta
- Alberta Government Services (Provincial) Building (1976) Ponoka, Alberta
- Grande Prairie Regional College (1976) Grande Prairie, Alberta
- Leighton Artist Colony, at the Banff Centre (1985) Banff, Alberta
- Douglas Cardinal, The Canadian Encyclopedia
- Douglas Cardinal, The Canada Council for the Arts
- Doyle, Richard I. (2001). Renaissance II: Canadian creativity and innovation in the new millennium. Intercept Ltd. p. 38. ISBN 978-0-660-18397-8.
- Pound, Richard W. (2005). 'Fitzhenry and Whiteside Book of Canadian Facts and Dates'. Fitzhenry and Whiteside.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Douglas Cardinal.|
- Architect's web site
- Canada Council 2001 Governor General's Award for Visual and Media Arts
- Washington Post
- Douglas Cardinal Archiving Project
- Concordia University Honorary Degree Citation, June 1999, Concordia University Records Management and Archives