The gallery/studio is located in the Exchange district of Winnipeg, an area where most of the buildings were built 1880-1918. So I took a walk around and shot some pictures with my iPhone.
The name comes from the Commodities Exchange that still is located in the area. From 1880-1918 this was the commercial district for the city, with banks, factories, newspapers, etc. springing up in the area. At the time Winnipeg was the gateway to the west, and the fastest growing city in Canada. It was the third largest city in 1911, and nicknamed the "little Chicago" for it's Chicago style architecture and importance as a transportation hub.
With the opening of the Panama Canal, the importance of the city as a trade route diminished, and Winnipeg's growth rate slowed. The commercial district moved south, to the current downtown area. This helped preserve the buildings from being demolished and replaced by newer ones.
The result is one of the largest turn of the century commercial districts in North America. It was declared A National Historic site in 1997.
The area was neglected during the 1970s and 80s, becoming sort of red light area, but in the last 20 years or so has seen revitalization. Now it is a neighborhood with galleries, funky stores, restaurants, theaters, and trendy loft apartments. Hopefully this trend will continue while preserving it's Victorian heritage.
Side note of the day
I have been searching for the past couple of months for striped tights, but had no luck. I found striped socks, but no tights! Well yesterday I finally found some. I like putting fishnets overtop, as I like the look better. So while I'm playing with my camera phone, here they are, along with my outfit for the day. (the tights don't show up as well in the outfit photo, so I took a close up).
Oh and it snowed today - in April!
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