September 2016

Posted by: Angela Yen on September 26, 2016 at 4:07 pm

Ivan Sayers with Marg Vandenberg (Interim CEO) and Gregory Dreicer (Director of Curatorial and Engagement). The certificate reads: “In recognition of your extensive contributions to the Museum and dedication to the preservation of fashion and city history. You are one of our greatest storytellers.”


The Museum of Vancouver would like to congratulate our long-time friend, partner and contributor, Ivan Sayers. Today we presented him with the distinction of Curator Emeritus.

Ivan Sayers was born in Cornwall, Ontario, and moved to British Columbia at the age of two. He graduated in 1969 from the University of British Columbia with a degree in Classical Studies and in 1970 began his museum career as a volunteer at the Vancouver Museum (before the name was changed). He was Curator of History at the Museum from 1976 to 1990 and in 1991 he left to become a consultant and lecturer. For over 40 years, Sayers has been producing lectures, exhibitions, and fashion shows on clothing and social history for museums and organizations across western Canada and the western United States.

Sayers has collected costume since he was a teenager and now has one of the finest privately owned collections of period clothing in Canada, with garments and accessories dating from c.1690 to the present. He regularly lectures at local universities and colleges in the Vancouver area, and is the Honourary Curator of the Society for the Museum of Original Costume. Sayers has received awards from the Western Canadian Designers and Fashion Association and the Vancouver Historical Society.

Sayers has been a pivotal guest curator at the Museum of Vancouver, creating popular past exhibitions such as Art Deco Chic: Extravagant glamour between the wars, From Rationing to Ravishing: The Transformation of Women’s Clothing in the 1940s and 1950s, and numerous presentations. He is a charismatic orator, with an irreplaceable bank of knowledge and stories about the history of clothes. We are proud and honoured that Ivan Sayers is the Museum of Vancouver’s Curator Emeritus. We look forward to continuing to work together.

Posted by: Angela Yen on September 26, 2016 at 10:50 am

Photo by Rebecca Blissett

The Museum of Vancouver is thrilled that Imogene Lim is sharing her collection of Chinese restaurant menus and her fascinating insight into Chinatown’s historic restaurants like WK Gardens and the original Sai Woo Chop Suey. Her collection of Chinese menus - which she inherited from her uncle and father - represent more than just nostalgia. As she highlighted in her recent presentation at the Museum, menus hold a tangible trace into the evolution of Chinese cuisine in North America.

Lim, who is a professor of Anthropology and Global Studies at Vancouver Island University is interested in the way food is represented and how that representation may change over time. She pays attention to the language, imagery and iconography used in the menus she collects. Lim is a real foodie and explained in her presentation that her menu collecting goes hand-in-hand with the actual dining experience. Her collecting has often inspired conversations on what is considered authentic Chinese cuisine and where in the city has the best dishes.

Lim’s extensive Chinese menu collection is now on view as part of the exhibition, All Together Now: Vancouver Collectors & Their Worlds.

Posted by: Angela Yen on September 21, 2016 at 4:03 pm

Photo by Rebecca Blissett

If you summoned all the pinball wizards in Canada, you’d definitely cross paths with Kyle Seller of East Van Amusements. Currently, his collection of vintage pinball machines and arcade games  - which include Funhouse (1988), Cyclone (1988) and Jack-Bot (1995) - are on display at the Museum of Vancouver. And they’re not just there for looking at. You can play them too!

Kyle Seller has about 60 machines in total and has been collecting and building his business since he was a teenager. He bought his first machine when he was 16. What started as a fun social activity to release stress, has become a successful business that allows Seller to share his passion with Vancouverites. He restores pinball machines and rents out pop-up arcades throughout the city.

Seller’s love for pinball comes from all angles. He finds the skill-based game more challenging and unpredictable (than video games) but also admires the craft, art and music that goes hand-in-hand with pinball. “The games I like best are from the mid to late ‘80s and use hand-drawn art… it cannot be matched today,” Seller says.

To celebrate these beloved games, MOV will be hosting pinball events on October 6 and 13, and November 1.  First, Seller - along with international pinball tournament champion Robert Gagno - will be participating in an enticing Q&A session, Between the Bumpers, moderated by Tommy Floyd. On October 13, the public can get their game on with our happy hour event and pinball tournament TILT! Public Pinball Tournament - hosted by Seller and local pinball tournament director Rob Moller. Lastly, MOV is hosting a screening of Wizard Mode - a documentary about Robert Gagno and his passion for pinball.


Posted by: Angela Yen on September 15, 2016 at 4:55 pm

The Museum of Vancouver (MOV) recently hosted an informative talk about food and its importance to Vancouver’s culture, history and environmental future.

Photo by Rebecca Blissett

The speakers included Imogene Lim, an anthropology and global studies professor at Vancouver Island University, and Harold Steves, a local farmer, argoecologist, and climate activist. Both are passionate collectors and contributors to the All Together Now exhibition which feature Lim’s extensive collection of Chinese take-out menus and Steves’ heirloom vegetable seeds, among 18 others.

Harold Steves comes from a line of farmers and seed savers. His great uncle and grandfather established the first seed company in Western Canada. He works out of his family farm in Richmond, raising non GMO heirloom seeds and grass fed beef. Steves explained the pivotal moment in BC’s agricultural history which influenced him and his wife to start saving local seeds. In 1985, the local seed retailer Buckerfields shut down. Seeds offered in their catalogue were slowly being replaced with varieties from California and Mexico – replacing what was once local. Steves was concerned about the loss of genetic diversity and being able to grow seed varieties in BC’s specific climate. So he started saving these seeds, which he now sells.

Steves went on to share some of the vegetables and plants he grows including the Yellow mangel (essentially a big beet that can grow to 10 pounds and has a sweeter taste), alpha tomatoes, Early Amber Sorghum, and Black Russian Sunflowers. He gave a glimpse into some of the growing and seed saving techniques he practices and at the end of the night, he gave out alpha tomato seeds for guests to plant in their own gardens. Thanks Harold!

For more photos from this event please visit:

Follow @Harold_Steves on Twitter.