Lieutenant Governor’s Suite Video Transcript

The Lieutenant Governor’s suite at Queen’s Park is used for dozens of official functions each year. In addition to hosting temporary art exhibits, the rooms here are also home to numerous works from Ontario’s art collection.

Hi, I’m Lani Wilson, Curator of the Government of Ontario Art Collection. One of the notable features of the suite are portraits of each of the province’s Lieutenant Governor’s dating back to its first, John Graves Simcoe.

To protect the art from the effects of light, humidity and temperature, we’ve made a few adjustments. All of the windows are lined with a protective ultraviolet coating. We’ve also positioned the artwork so it’s not in direct sunlight at any time.

In addition to these efforts, the older portraits sometimes require individual conservation. For example, this portrait of Sir Oliver Mowat, Ontario’s 3rd Premier and 8th Lieutenant Governor, painted in 1903, was showing its age. With paintings like this, we use ultra violet and infrared light to see old layers of varnish and to examine large drying cracks in the paint. Professional conservators then remove the old varnish and fill in the cracks to create a smoother and more stable surface.

Interestingly, this painting has historically been attributed to 19th century portrait artist John Wycliffe Lowes Forester but upon further examination with modern technology, the signature of A.D. Patterson was found in the upper left hand corner.

Come and see for yourself. Visit the Lieutenant Governor’s suite by booking a tour of the Ontario Legislature at www.ontla.on.ca. Find out more about the Government of Ontario’s art collection, at ontario.ca/archives

Learn More About the Government of Ontario Art Collection


In 2005, members of the Ontario Society of Artists donated works to the Government of Ontario Art Collection. All the diverse works represent some aspect of Ontario as reflected through the eyes of its talented artists.
Explore a wide range of images of fine art collected over the last 150 years.