Denise Ryner

Title text


Denise RynerDenise is a former registrar/archivist at Art Metropole and was a contributing editor to FUSE Magazine. She is pursuing an MA in Art History at the University of British Columbia. She received a BA (Hons) in Art History from the University of Toronto. During her undergraduate years and after graduation, she worked at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery.





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Hart House 2007–2012
  • Art History student
  • Member of the Hart House Art Committee
  • Work-study student at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery
  • Regular “gym-goer”
  • Secretary for the Hart House Art Committee
  • Chair for the Outreach Sub-committee
  • Worked with the Hart House art collection
  • Co-curated Location/Dislocation exhibit


“My involvement with Hart House helped me to develop some of the skills and knowledge that I used in gallery-related jobs in recent years. Hart House and the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery allowed me to realize one of my personal goals: to start organizing and curating my own exhibitions.


“While working at Hart House, I was impressed with the enthusiasm, curiosity and knowledge that a lot of the staff and visitors showed with regard to the Hart House Art Collection. I always enjoyed any opportunity I had to learn about, and to talk about the art and artists that comprise the collection and especially enjoyed assisting researchers with their work on related artists and histories.


“Being a heritage building and a hub of activity, there were constant worries about maintaining secure and optimal conditions for artwork on display in Hart House. It was always a balance to keep the collection highly visible and accessible to students, staff and the public, but also to make sure that the work was protected and respected.”


On her photo (above) taken in the Bickersteth Room

“I like the juxtaposition of the photograph of Hart House’s first warden, J. Burgon Bickersteth—who founded the Sketch Club Committee, now the Art Committee, in order to teach young men how to appreciate and acquire art—with me, a young woman who would have been out of place at that first committee meeting in the early 1920s, yet has had the chance to play a small role in the art collection’s development and care.”


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