Thursday, September 1, 2011

Day 244 - Sir Howard Douglas (Old Arts) Hall

The University of New Brunswick campus at Fredericton features the longest continuously serving university building in Canada:a lovely stone building which has been known by many names, among them "King's College", "Old Arts" and its current moniker, "Sir Howard Douglas Hall".

Old Arts was the school's original building when the university began operation on its current site on the hill in Fredericton in 1829. At that time, Old Arts housed classroom space, lab space, office space as well as dorm rooms and a chapel. The chapel, a lovely room on the ground floor, is still in use and contains much of the original furniture.

Photographing Old Arts is not easy. To get a good shot of the front (top picture) you have to wander down the grassy slope in front to a line of trees. Both the branches overhead and the slope below you tend to get in the way of your shot. In this photo, for example, the bottom of the first floor is lost behind the lip of the hill while the dome is obscured somewhat by leaves.

The picturesque entrance on the east side of the building (lower photo) creates challenges because of the close proximity of other buildings and a parking lot. Difficult to get a nice shot of it but well worth the effort. Unfortunately, the west entrance (which offers itself up to your camera) is not nearly as pretty.

And, as for the rear of the building, well, it's not as nice as the front, it is skirted by a busy parking lot and, to get far enough away for a full shot, you have to climb onto the terraced roof of the science library and still deal with wires.

To sum it up, Old Arts is a gorgeous building but just a little bit shy.

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