Art Gallery of Ontario

Thomson Galleries, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Designers: Frank Gehry International

Housing a Collection

One of North America’s leading art museums, boasting a redesign by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry, opened two new attractions: the Thomson Collection of Ship Models Collection, which features one of the largest collections of ship models ever assembled, and The Thomson Collection of European Art, featuring over 900 Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque artworks the crown jewel of which is Peter Paul Rubens’ “The Massacre of the Innocents.”  kubik maltbie was faced with unique display and casework challenges that pushed the limits of possibility in a museum environment.

Intricate Casework, Stunning Showcases, Exquisite Enclosures

The international design partnership of kubik maltbie and Click Netherfield worked in close collaboration with architects from Gehry International for nearly two years on design development, production, and installation of some of the most cutting-edge museum casework in the world.

The team’s work is comprised of more than eighty-five showcases in total throughout the AGO, including six spectacular one-of-a-kind undulating curved glass cases, along with eleven other freestanding cases that house the Thomson Collection of ship models and protect this priceless collection.

Throughout the galleries, kubik maltbie fashioned cases that are exquisitely detailed in a range of beautiful finishes including granite, marble, wood, and copper to complement the beautiful objects on display. Several smaller enclosures – one clad in shining, overlapping copper tiles, the other in black slate -create intimate spaces for visitors to view exquisite works such as illuminated manuscripts. The team also engineered and fabricated twenty custom-built wall cases, eighteen free-standing cases for the European Art Galleries, and nineteen detailed glass cases framed in Indigenous Douglas fir millwork for the Canadian Art & First Nations Galleries.

The craftsmanship, detailing, and intricacy of installation, sets the AGO casework as an international standard for museums and galleries across the globe.

"The team’s resources, both internal and external, are unparalleled within the industry. I would not hesitate to work with them again and can recommend them without reservation as a partner with the superior project management and fabrication skills that are required to bring a museum to life."

- Craig Webb, Partner, Gehry Partners, Art Gallery of Ontario

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