Anne of Green Gables

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Anne of Green Gables Centenary Exhibit Traces the Birth of the Literary Icon in Images, Cover Art, and Documentary Media

Anne of Green Gables: A Literary Icon at 100

May 1, 2008 – March 1, 2009

Toronto, March 17th, 2008. Curated by Dr. Irene Gammel, Anne of Green Gables: A Literary Icon at 100 explores the complex evolution of the world’s most famous literary redhead – Anne Shirley. The exhibit is composed of nine visual panels, artefacts, and a creative interactive activity sheet for children. A short video documentary entitled Looking for Anne produced at Ryerson University is a key component in the exhibit.

1964 Edition Cover Art by Hilton Hassell. Estate of Hilton Hassell, Toronto
There’s such a lot of different Annes in me,” Anne says in the novel, and visitors will discover the many faces that provided the inspiration for the iconic character through a vivid illustration of portraits, photographs, magazine advertisements, cover art and posters. The exhibition follows nine themes entitled The Face, The Formulas, The Fashion, The Home Place, Friends & Foes, Family, and The Future: 1908, which collectively unravel the conception of Anne’s character and the personal and sometimes unconventional sources of inspiration that were crucial to Montgomery’s work.

“My goal has been to reach across Canada, paying tribute to L.M. Montgomery, whose work has remarkably helped to connect people from east to west, across the span of a full century,” says curator Irene Gammel. This exhibition is widely accessible to the Canadian public with installations in venues in Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver, Winnipeg, and Prince Edward Island.


TORONTO: April 19 to September 2, 2008

Spadina Museum: Historic House and Gardens, City of Toronto

CAVENDISH: May 15 to November 30, 2008

Green Gables Heritage Site, Parks Canada, PEI

VANCOUVER: May 31 to June 8, 2008

Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, University of British Columbia, coinciding with the 2008 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences of Canada

OTTAWA: June 4, 2008 to March 1, 2009

Library and Archives Canada (co-curated with June Creelman)

CHARLOTTETOWN: June 12 to September 30, 2008

Confederation Centre of the Arts

WINNIPEG: September 2 to September 30, 2008

Hamilton Galleria, University of Winnipeg Library

Curator Irene Gammel holds the Canada Research Chair in Modern Literature and Culture at Ryerson University in Toronto. She is the author of ^ Looking for Anne: How Lucy Maud Montgomery Dreamed Up A Literary Classic, the first book to explore the real story behind the imaginary Anne. The book will be published by Key Porter on 01 April 2008, and book-launch events will be featured at several exhibition openings across Canada.

The exhibit is produced by Ryerson University’s Modern Literature and Culture Research Center with the support of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

^ Publicity images are available at / Click on Media

For more information on the exhibit, please contact Dr. Suzanne Zelazo or Amleet Mangat at (416) 979-5000 ext. 4770 and 4771 or,

For more information on the book, please contact Diane Hargrave at (416) 467-9954 or


Evelyn Nesbit

This photograph of Evelyn Nesbit by Rudolf Eickemeyer, Jr. inspired the romantic, starry-eyed expression of Anne.
Photographic History Collection, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution

Godey’s Lady’s Book (June 1883) featured gorgeous fashion plates in beautifully tinted colour, and Maud was an avid reader of this magazine.

Modern Literature and Culture Research Centre, Ryerson University, Toronto

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