Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Pearson Building

The Lester B. Pearson Building is along Sussex Drive, and was part of Doors Open. This is home to the Department Of Foreign Affairs And International Trade, and was built in the 1970s in a modernist style. It is named for one of our best- if not our best- prime ministers.

The lobby area was busy. Staff were on hand, and one thing I should have photographed was a book that looked to be five hundred pages thick- part one of four of a formal treaty. This totem pole caught my eye.

The same applied to this bear sculpture.

A portrait of the Queen could be found here as well.

Along with a statue of the great man himself. This is a scale model of the statue of Pearson that stands on Parliament Hill (a statue that is currently off limits due to work being done around the area). You can see pics of that statue here. The same scale model statue was in the Rideau Club, another Doors Open destination where photos weren't allowed (more's the pity). The Club, which predates Confederation and is marking its 150th anniversary this year, was started by Prime Minister John A. Macdonald, and in its present location has great views of the city, beautiful rooms (one of which is filled with Yousuf Karsh portraits, very fitting, since he was a member), and a welcoming atmosphere. The Pearson statue caught my eye when I found him in one of the rooms, and the attendant in the room mentioned that many people she had seen through the day spoke as highly of him as I did. Pearson is a far cry from the vindictive current PM (hello there, Stevie!), who no doubt despises any predecessor who isn't a Tory. 


  1. A memory of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1957.


  2. Pearson was one of the good guys. I think there's also a copy of that statue in Toronto. It looks familiar to me... maybe at the airport? The one that also has his name. :)

  3. The mix of sculptures is quite funny...

  4. Pearson strikes a pose that ooses confidence and a relaxed approach to dealing with problems. So many interesting features in this building.

  5. I'm with Gemma, so many interesting features. Statues, carvings, paintings, 70's modern. Something different at every turn.


  6. Yes interesting features in the building as that bear.

  7. Being a Yank, I've never figured out the royalty thing even after having lived in England for several years. :-)

  8. It a;most looks like a museum with those sculptures, statues and portraits.

  9. If only we had more PM's like him! Nice knew header photo. I can relate to that one.

  10. at 1st i thought the bear was made of butter (he looks pretty friendly, or maybe he is just hungry??) ... have you ever been to one of those art festivals? i want to ... i have only seen movies and a documentary on one ... so cool!! ( :

  11. You have taken good advantage of the open doors to show us some pretty neat stuff that's hidden away from us. Pearson? Yes! Pearson brought in many of the major programs we have today. He also gave us a new flag. and stevie has taken away so much from us...right down to our basic freedoms.

  12. @Tomas: one of his finest hours.

    @Halcyon: it wouldn't surprise me that there would be one at the airport.

    @VP: yes, quite a contrast in influences.

    @Gemma: I wish we had him today. We desperately need him.

    @Janis: it's a very different building compared to some I've shown.

    @Marianne: I was actually looking for another bear- but I think it's in another building not that far from here.

    @Revrunner: I rather like that we've held onto our ties to the monarchy.

  13. @Jan: it does, yes.

    @Hilary: thank you!

    @Gnome: he gave us so much, and now it's being taken away by a man I can only conclude is a sociopath. The election in October must remove him and his party from power.

    @Luis: very much so.

    @Tanya: so do I.

    @Beth: I've heard of butter in sculpted art, but this one seems to be of wood. The art festivals I've been to don't include that!

    @Red: Pearson would be horrified by what the present government is doing to the country.

  14. sorry to say you don't have more like him.

  15. Wonderful statue! The portrait of the Queen reminded me of a childhood memory of mine. I must have been around 8 or 9 years old, I was on vacation with my parents and we were in Canada. I went with my dad into the office of a motel to get a room for the night and there on the wall was a picture of the Queen who was then about 29 or 30! I thought we had arrived in some enchanted place where princesses become queens and live happily every after. To this day, I can still picture that portrait in my mind.

  16. Doors Open sure is a wonderful event in Ottawa!

  17. Some nice sights! No wonder no one understands treaties is they're all that huge!

    I do think the portrait of Queen E is a lot nicer than the modern one I saw of her as a child on her pony (blue) with her father nearby!

  18. @Tex: I hope the next election turns out for the better, because another four years of Harper means we'll pass the point of no return. The damage he'll have done will be irreversible.

    @Karl: it was an interesting touch to the lobby.

    @Sharon: she's been around a long time. She'll no doubt pass Victoria's record.

    @EG: it certainly is!

    @Cheryl: I was startled- part one of four! It was the size of a Tom Clancy novel!

  19. The totem pole and the bear would also have caught my attention. Very cool both of them.

  20. just a bit of a guess don't like Stephen Harper do you!!!

  21. He looks very stately. I of course love the totem pole. As for the building, well let's just say I'm no great fan of that time span's architecture... :-)

  22. Pearson was a good man - not many of them around in Ottawa these days!

  23. I love the totem pole and the bear! :)

  24. @Marleen: I think so too.

    @Jose: very unusual for a place dedicated to diplomats.

    @Whisk: thanks!

    @Gill: is it that obvious?

    @Ciel: neither am I, though at least this one doesn't loom over something like nineteenth century buildings and ruin shots!

    @Janey: it really is.

    @Norma: thank you!

    @RedPat: one of these days I'll have to go up to his grave. It's over in Quebec.

    @Linda: me too!

  25. Interesting stuff William, I like the bear and the totem pole, the statue is a great piece of work..

  26. Impressive building and I love the statue.

  27. The totem pole takes top billing.

  28. Nice sculptures all...quite a diverse selection!

  29. Good Prime Ministers are hard to come by these days William :) believe me when I say I certainly did NOT vote for our current PM!

  30. @Geoff: so do I.

    @Lois: me too.

    @Mari: it does.

    @Randy: me as well.

    @Kay: quite so.

    @Grace: that's true.

    @Shelly: he's popular.