Edmonton statues
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  Posted July 9th, 2011 by Zdenko  in Edmonton | 6 comments

Discovering Edmonton

Source: C2E Portal
Edmonton statues
Today I visited Edmonton’s outdoor statues and photographed them. I present them here in the order that I photographed them. The scary thing is that I knew only three of those people.

Constable Ezio Farone

CONSTABLE EZIO FARAONE, member of Edmonton Police Service. Killed in the line of duty June 25th 1990. Constable Faraone stopped a suspect vehicle fleeing the scene of a bank robbery. While attempting to arrest the only visible suspect, the driver, Constable Faraone was shot and killed by a second suspect hiding in the back seat. He died instantly at 33 years of age. Constable Faraone was committed to his family, his work and his community.

Wayne Gretzky

Wayne Gretzky was the most dominant hockey player of his generation, and perhaps of all-time. He was bigger than the game itself. Canadians identified themselves as fellow citizens of Gretzky, and foreigners posed with questions on Canada, named Gretzky first, before prime ministers or other celebrities.

Frank Spinelli

History 101… Italian-Style! In 1959, Frank Spinelli bought a small store with partner Remiro Zalunardo, on the corner of 95th Street and 108th Avenue. The rest, as they say, is history. About 1964, he took over the store and the Italian Centre Shop grew to a wholesale empire which supplies stores and restaurants throughout western Canada. His wife, daughter Teresa and son Pietro, all worked in the store. Sadly, Pietro died in 1996, shortly after his 32nd birthday. ‘Mr. Spinelli embraced immigrants and politicians alike’.

Pioneer Women Of Alberta – Emily Murphy

“Nothing ever happens by chance,” Emily Murphy liked to say. “Everything is pushed from behind.” After twelve years of pushing, the doors of the Canadian Senate finally opened to women, but it was too late for Emily Murphy to enter. She died on October 27, 1933.

Lunchbox Joe

Lunchbox Joe is a statue sponsored by the Devonian Gardens that was reclaimed from the old Churchill Square. This statue, created by S. Johnson, features a worker who is relaxing in the Square, enjoying his lunch break.

Sir Winston Churchill Statue

The bronze statue of Rt. Hon. Sir Winston Churchill Spencer was sculpted by Oscar Neman and unveiled by Sir Winston Churchill’s daughter, Lady Mary Soames, on May 24, 1989.

Tough Minded Women

“Tough-Minded Women” (located at the Milner Branch of the Edmonton Public Library).

The Traders

This statue stands outside the Edmonton Public Library. Called “The Trader” it commemorates the pioneering history of the city. In the 1790s, Fort Edmonton was established as one of the northerly trading posts of the Hudson’s Bay Company.

Mahatma Gandhi

This bust of Mahatma Gandhi is located to the south of the main branch of the public library in Edmonton, Alberta.

The Merchant

“The Merchant” is a sculpture by John Weaver that is located across from the Citadel Theatre in downtown Edmonton, Alberta.

Robert Burns

Famous Scottish poet Robbie Burns statue in front of the Hotel McDonald in downtown Edmonton.

David Kootook Memorial

Description: In November 1972, a plane crashed en route to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. The passengers included two patients seeking medical treatment, a nurse, and the pilot. The nurse died when the plane crashed, and one of the patients, a pregnant woman, died a day later. The other patient was David Pisurayak Kootook, a 14 year old Inuk boy who was suffering from appendicitis. Kootook helped care for the pilot (Martin Hartwell), who had two broken legs from the crash.

With average temperates of -35 degrees Fahrenheit, weeks went by without help arriving. Kootook passed away after 20 days, and Hartwell made the tough decision to eat the leg of the nurse to survive. Hartwell was eventually rescued 31 days after the crash.

Voyageur Canoe – Caravel, by Isla Burns

Grant Notley

At the intersection of 116th. Street and Victoria Park Road, are Grant Notley Park, a memorial for a former leader of the provincial New Democratic Party, who was killed in a plane crash in 1984, and Le Marchand Mansion. The original mansion is now a complex of offices and shops, and a new high rise condominium tower adjoins the original building on the east.

Maude Bowman

Few dedicated members of three organizations of enthusiastic amateurs-the Art Association, Edmonton Art Club, and Fine and Applied Arts Committee of the Local Council of Women-met in the studio of Edmonton’s only professional artist, William Johnstone, in November. They discussed the idea of starting an art museum. Maude Bowman of the Local Council of Women suggested to the Edmonton Art Club the establishment of a permanent art collection for the community.

Judge Lucien Dubuc

Lucien Dubuc was the son of Manitoba Chief Justice Sir Joseph Dubuc and he arrived in Edmonton to practice law at the turn of the century. By 1920 he had been appointed to the district court bench the beginning of a career that culminated in his appointment as Chief Justice of northern Alberta. He became the first judge in Alberta to allow proceedings in French in 1924.

Nellie McClung

Nellie L. McClung (1873-1951), novelist, journalist, suffragette and temperance worker. She was a member of the Alberta legislature, the only woman on the Dominion War Council, and the first woman on the CBC Board of Governors

Abraham Cristall

The Jewish presence in Edmonton goes back 117 years, when Abraham Cristall and his wife Rebecca became the communitys first Jewish settlers in the autumn of 1893. They moved into a house on the eastern side of the Hudsons Bay Reserve, near 95th Street. As other Jewish newcomers arrived, they settled near the Cristalls.


A holocaust dedication memorial on legislature grounds is not far from the Terrace building.

The Pioneer Olle Holmsten – Storyteller, Statue outside of Royal Alberta Museum

This statue is located south of the former Provincial Archives building (now the southwest wing of the Museum). It was dedicated as a gift to the people of Alberta by the German-Canadian Association to honour pioneer immigrants of Germanic descent. The piece is cast bronze and has no welded steel . Olle was instructor at the Alberta College of Art and Design. There are 5 of his sculptures on the museum grounds, ( the family in the front of the building, cast in concrete. The two bronze sculptures on the East and West walls representing Agriculture and Technology with 5 figures on each one, the Story teller in bronze , and the large four cornered concrete star fountain with 4 bronze sculptures in  each corner) that were basically all completed in one year. All the bronze cast sculptures were cast in New York.   

Emily Murphy

Emily Murphy (located in Emily Murphy Park) – the five-foot eight-inch, 450-pound bronze statue created by Donna Marchyshyn was unveiled September 12, 1992. Emily Ferguson Murphy was a famous female activist best known for fighting with the British Privy Council to have women declared “persons.” Murphy was also the first woman to be appointed a police magistrate and judge and played a key role in the passage of the 1911 Dower Act, which gave women the right to one-third of their husbands’ estates.

The Rescue

The statue represents the ultimate role of a firefighter; that of saving lives. The firefighter is dressed in protective clothing representative of the pre 1980 era, keeping with the historical character of Old Strathcona. The Statue was created by Danek Mozdzenski, a local sculptor.

George Francis Hustler

Community activist and ordained Methodist minister was Principal at Bennett school working tirelessly to help the impoverished residents of Cloverdale. During his 21 years at Bennett School he led 26 school and community sports teams to city schampionships.

The Ukranian Pioneer Centenial Monument
This monument was dedicated to the Ukrainian people that settled in Canada over 100 years ago. There is a significant Ukrainian population in the area of Edmonton, Alberta. Location: Legislative grounds of Alberta, west of reflective pool.

Catching Neutrinos
This sculpture “Catching Neutrinos” is was sponsored by the Edmonton Journal and captures stories that made headlines in Edmonton, Alberta.



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6 comments to “Edmonton statues”

  1. Comment by MC:

    The term “Statues” refers only to figurative sculptures of people, so while most of these artworks pictured are indeed “statues, a few of them are not.

    The sculpture you have listed above as “Voyager Canoe” is actually a work by Isla Burns called “Caravel”.
    The sculptures from the Royal Alberta Museum grounds are also misidentified. The seated bronze figure is called “Storyteller” (not “The Pioneer”) and it is by Ollie Holmsten (who created many of the sculptures for the RAM).

    “Catching Neutrinos” was made by Darci Mallon.

  2. Comment by Tor Jensen:

    Just a correction on the spelling of Ole (not Ollie) Holmsten. He was my uncle and I have many fond memories of him.

  3. Comment by Irene Cornwell:

    You can learn a great deal about George Francis Hustler in the Edmonton School Archives at McKay School in the river valley. A fascinating and unique individual. He came to Canada on his own at age 15 and induced his family to follow him…

  4. Comment by Bob Pike:

    The information you have with the ‘Storyteller’ by Ollie Holstein (located at the Provincial museum) is incorrect. You have the title directly under the picture correct but you have credited

    Harry Wolfarth as the artist and incorrectly stated it is welded steel and bronze. The piece is cast bronze and has no welded steel . Ollie was my instructor at the Alberta College of Art and Design. There are 5 of his sculptures on the museum grounds, ( the family in the front of the building, cast in concrete. The two bronze sculptures on the East and West walls representing Agriculture and Technology with 5 figures on each one, the Story teller in bronze , and the large four cornered concrete star fountain with 4 bronze sculptures in each corner) that were basically all completed in one year.

    All the bronze cast sculptures were cast in New York. I helped him make the molds for the bronze sculptures in the corners of the fountain. I hope this gets corrected. I had contacted the museum previously about having the information about the art in their online information as there was no information about any of the work. Artists work very hard for so little, The least that can be done is to recognize then for their effort. I’m very sure that ollie never made one nickel for hie effort on those pieces, so it’s important that he be recognized correctly. Bob Pike

  5. Comment by Zdenko:

    Hello Bob, and thank you for your comment. I accepted your correction and made changes to this post. Sorry about incorrect statements…

    Regards, Zdenko

  6. Comment by Jonas Holmsten:

    My fathers name was Olle Holmsten and nothing else. Have a good canadian day, while I wait for the first snow tonight in Sweden!

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