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As a sculptor of large-scale works, Walter S. Allward (1874–1955) seldom exhibited during his lifetime except on rare occasions when he contributed clay models and smaller sculptures to group exhibitions. Allward’s work has also rarely been exhibited since his death in April 1955. The two most notable posthumous exhibitions featuring his works include a memorial exhibition organized by the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 1955–56, and a touring exhibition of more than 100 drawings presented in 2005–6.


Walter S. Allward, Untitled, n.d., drawing, Walter Seymour Allward Fonds, Queen’s University Archives, Kingston.
Walter S. Allward, Untitled, n.d., drawing, Walter Seymour Allward Fonds, Queen’s University Archives, Kingston.



Key Exhibitions



Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, 22nd Annual Exhibition. Gallery of the Ontario Society of Artists, Toronto, April 1901.

Pan-American Exposition, Buffalo, New York, May 1–November 2, 1901.


The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, 101st Annual Exhibition, January 22–March 3, 1906.


Canadian Art Club, 5th Annual Exhibition, Toronto, February 8–27, 1912.


Canadian Art Club, 6th Annual Exhibition, Toronto, May 9–31, 1913.


Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, 43rd Exhibition. Art Gallery of Toronto, November 17, 1921–January 2, 1922.


Canadian Section of Fine Arts, British Empire Exhibition, Wembley, England.


Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, Memorial Section: Sketches, Models in Plaster and Photographs of the Work of the Late Walter Seymour Allward, C.M.G., R.C.A., F.R.A.I.C., LL.D., 1876–1955. Art Gallery of Toronto, November 25, 1955–January 2, 1956.


Vimy and After: Drawings by Walter Seymour Allward. Curated by Tony Urquhart. Organized and circulated by Gallery Stratford with the support of the Good Foundation and the Year of the Veteran, Canada. Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, May 1–June 26, 2005; Gallery Stratford, September 11–November 13, 2005; Carleton University Art Gallery, Ottawa, November 28, 2005–January 29, 2006; and the Art Gallery of Peterborough, April 7–May 14, 2006.


Vimy—After the Battle. Canadian War Museum, April 6–November 13, 2017.



Key Archival Collections

Archives of Ontario, Toronto

The William Lyon Mackenzie Centennial Committee Fonds contains records documenting the building of the William Lyon Mackenzie Memorial in Queen’s Park, Toronto, between 1936 and 1941.


Museum and Archives, Peterborough
The Citizens War Memorial Committee Fonds includes correspondence, photographs, and other records relating to the Peterborough War Memorial.


National Gallery of Canada Library and Archives, Ottawa

The Walter S. Allward Collection includes more than one hundred photographs documenting the construction of the Vimy Memorial, along with a small number of photographs depicting monuments such as the South African War Memorial, Toronto, and the Bell Memorial, Brantford, Ontario. Also included are portraits of Allward by Toronto-based photographers Sidney Carter, Arthur S. Goss, M.O. Hammond, and Pringle & Booth.


Queen’s University Archives, Kingston
The Walter Seymour Allward Fonds consists of architectural plans, drawings, photographs, correspondence, and other textual records relating to the Vimy Memorial, drawings and photographs of other works by Allward, including the South African War Memorial and the Peterborough War Memorial, family photographs, documents pertaining to various awards received by Allward, and several war cartoons drawn by Allward in the late 1930s and early 1940s.


Stratford–Perth Archives, Stratford
The Orr Family Fonds includes correspondence relating to the design and financing of the Stratford War Memorial.


Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto
The Sir Frederick Banting Papers include sketches and photographs showing designs by Allward for the proposed Sir Frederick Banting Memorial at the University of Toronto.



Further Reading

Bormanis, Katrina Daina. “A Field of Care: The National Vimy Memorial and the Commemoration of Missing Canadian Great War Servicemen in France.” Journal of War & Culture Studies (2016): 1–20.


Borstad, Lane. “Walter Allward: Sculptor and Architect of the Vimy Ridge Memorial.” Journal of the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada 33, no. 1 (2008): 23–38.


Cover of the exhibition catalogue Vimy and After: Drawings by Walter Seymour Allward (2005).
Cover of Jonathan F. Vance’s Death So Noble: Memory, Meaning, and the First World War (1997).

Brandon, Laura. Art or Memorial? The Forgotten History of Canada’s War Art. Calgary: University of Calgary Press, 2006.


Brandon, Laura. “History as Monument: The Sculptures on the Vimy Memorial.” Dispatches 11 (January 2000): 1–4.


Bridle, Augustus. “Canadians of To-day and To-morrow: Walter S. Allward, Sculptor.” Globe (Toronto), Saturday Magazine Section, May 28, 1910, A1, A10.


Bridle, Augustus. “Walter Allward,” in Sons of Canada: Short Studies of Characteristic Canadians, 123–29. Toronto, London, and Paris: J.M. Dent & Sons, 1916.


Cook, Tim. Vimy: The Battle and the Legend. Toronto: Allen Lane, 2017.


Duffy, Dennis. “Complexity and Contradiction in Canadian Public Sculpture: The Case of Walter Allward.” The American Review of Canadian Studies 38, no. 2 (Summer 2008): 189–206.


Evans, Suzanne. Mothers of Heroes, Mothers of Martyrs: World War I and the Politics of Grief. Montreal: McGill University Press, 2007.


Hale, Katherine. “Walter S. Allward, Sculptor.” The Canadian Magazine 52, no. 3 (January 1919): 783–88.


Hucker, Jacqueline. “‘Battle and Burial’: Recapturing the Cultural Meaning of Canada’s National Memorial on Vimy Ridge.” The Public Historian 31, no. 1 (Winter 2009): 89–109.


Hucker, Jacqueline. “Vimy: A Monument for the Modern World.” Journal of the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada 33, no. 1 (2008): 39–48.


Hucker, Jacqueline and Julian Smith. Vimy: Canada’s Memorial to a Generation. Ottawa: Sanderling Press, 2012.


Mavor, James. “Walter Allward, Sculptor,” in Year Book of Canadian Art, 1913, 249–53. London and Toronto: J.M. Dent & Sons, Limited, 1913.


McFarlane, Arthur E. “The Work of Walter Allward.” Busy Man’s Magazine 19, no. 1 (November 1909): 27–33.


Perry, Anne Anderson. “Walter Allward: Canada’s Great Sculptor.” National Pictorial (March 1, 1922): 1–3.


Perry, Anne Anderson. “Walter Allward—Canada’s Great Sculptor.” International Studio 75 (April 1922): 120–24.


Urquhart, Jane. The Stone Carvers. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2001.


Vance, Jonathan F. Death So Noble: Memory, Meaning and the First World War. Vancouver: UBC Press, 1997.



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