Arnold, John, 1934-2017

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Arnold, John, 1934-2017

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      • Arnold, John

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      1934 - 2017


      John Arnold was born in Cookstown, Ontario in 1934. He studied at the Royal Conservatory, graduating with a diploma in piano. He then went to the Ontario College of Art and Design. After graduation, he worked for Design Craft Limited, a Toronto firm that specialized in the arrangement of commercial displays in publicly sited showcases and at exhibitions. He was a senior member of the design team for the Canadian Pavilion at Expo 67. At around the same time, he was also hired to head the design team of the National Museum of Science and Technology (now the Canada Science and Technology Museum). In this capacity, he designed the Crazy Kitchen with Glenda Krusberg. After this period, he worked as an independent architectural design consultant for 30 years. Among many public projects, he worked on the Royal Tyrell Museum of Paleontology in Drumheller, Alberta, and the RCAF Memorial Hall of Tribute at the National Aviation Museum (now Canada Aviation and Space Museum).

      For the RCAF Memorial Hall of Tribute project, he played two roles: first design consultant and then artistic advisor. In his first role he was at first responsible for preparing a report for the RCAF Memorial Fund setting out guidelines for the architect for the memorial. In order to do so, he liaised with the Fund, the National Aeronautical Collection Staff, and the Architecture and Planning Division of the National Museum of Canada. In his second contract, he was to act as a liaison between the Fund, the Jury selected to judge prospective art works, the artists ultimately selected, the National Museum Corporation, the Department of Public Works, as well as the principal architect for the project.

      Arnold also focused on residential architecture. He served on the Board of Directors of Heritage Ottawa and designed the logo for that organization based on the local landmark building the Aberdeen Pavilion. He was editor of the Ottawa Guide of Heritage Structures and was a member of the City of Ottawa’s Local Architectural Conservation Advisory Committee.

      Arnold died in 2017 at the age of 83, survived by his partner of 48 years, Stephen Boissonneault.


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      Written by A. Torrance, 2022-08. French translation by Céline Mongeau, Laroque Lingjuistic Services, 2022-10. Entered into Archeion 2022-10.




          -“Arnold, John”. (July 29, 2017). Ottawa Citizen. Obituaries. Accessed online 2022-08-18:
          -Canada Aviation and Space Museum Library and Archives, John Arnold Fonds.
          -Heritage Ottawa. (Monday, July 31, 2017). “Remembering John Arnold, a designer, artist and heritage advocate. Heritage Ottawa website, accessed 2022-09-01:
          -Ramsay, Janie. (Wednesday, August 9, 2017). “Crazy Kitchen inventor John Arnold came from Cookstown.” Innisfil Journal. Accessed online 2022-09-01:
          -Spears, Tom. (August 4, 2017). “Obituary: Crazy Kitchen co-creator John Arnold designed Ottawa museums, homes and even a bridge.” Ottawa Citizen. Accessed online 2022-08-18:

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