The Changing Face of Canada’s Parliament Buildings: An Analysis of the Visual Representations Produced Between 1859 and 1927

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Reichert Steinhauer, Michel Mike




As we understand it today, Parliament Hill bears little resemblance to how it was seen or experienced in the past. Constructed between 1859 and 1927, the Parliamentary Precinct consists of a building grouping of singular architectural importance. The thesis examines the interplay between the original and added building components, and explores the change in function and situatedness of each building. The visual representations examined within this thesis permit an analysis of the Parliamentary Precinct both within and outside of the context of the new Centre Block. Following the emergence of a new primary façade, the analysis of the visual material points to a break of the original symmetrical building plan. Four distinct building elevations present a building grouping that once extended beyond one principal façade, but gradually emerged into a monumental façade synonymous today with Ottawa, the Government of Canada, and Canada itself.


Art History
Fine Arts




Carleton University

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Master of Arts: 

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Art History

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Theses and Dissertations

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