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Exhibition honours Canadian figure skating legend Toller Cranston

An exhibition that celebrates the life, work and artistry of Canadian figure skating legend Toller Cranston opens this weekend in northeastern Ontario.

Northeastern Ontario towns celebrate artistry of Olympic figure skater

Some of the paintings by Toller Cranston on display at the Kirkland Lake Museum of Northern History. (Submitted by Cesar Forero)

An exhibition that celebrates the life, work and artistry of Canadian figure skating legend Toller Cranston opens this weekend in northeastern Ontario.

The Olympic athlete grew up in Kirkland Lake.

He died in 2015 at the age of 65.

The exhibition of Cranston's famous paintings, skating costumes, and memorabilia can be seen at the Kirkland Lake Museum of Northern History and at the Temiskaming Art Gallery, which is roughly an hour's drive from Kirkland Lake.

Cesar Forero has organized the Toller Cranston retrospective. Forero is with the Contemporary Art Committee of Kirkland Lake.

He says that some of the exhibition highlights include one of the very last costumes Cranston competed in, some of his later paintings and photos of him and his sister growing up in Kirkland Lake.

Toller Cranston's jacket and boots are part of the exhibit at the Kirkland Lake Museum of Northern History. (Submitted by Cesar Forero)

As a figure skater originally from Colombia, Ferero says that he admired Cranston tremendously.

"Cranston's skating changed the history of figure skating around the world," he said.

"We remember him not for his technique, not for his jumps, but for who he was as a dancer and as a performer."

Besides being an innovative figure skater, Toller Cranston was also an accomplished painter. (Submitted by Cesar Forero)

Cranston was the bronze medallist at the 1976 Olympic Winter Games in Innsbruck. He was Canadian senior men's champion from 1971 to 1976 and won the free-skate segment of the world championship four times. Cranston was also a sought-after choreographer in figure skating.

The exhibition runs until April 17 at the Temiskaming Art Gallery and until May 4 at the Kirkland Lake Museum of Northern History.

An exhibition celebrating the life and work of Toller Cranston starts this weekend in northeastern Ontario. The Olympic figure skater and visual artist grew up in Kirkland Lake. He died of a heart attack four years ago at the age of 65. The retrospective exhibit officially launches Saturday at the Kirkland Lake Museum of Northern History and at the Temiskaming Art Gallery, which are about an hour's drive apart. Visitors will get to see some of Cranston's famous paintings, costumes and objects from his career in figure skating and in art. Cesar Forero is an organizer with the event. He spoke with Up North's Wendy Bird about what's in store and why people should make the trip to see the exhibition ... 6:51

With files by Wendy Bird

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