Selwyn Pullan: Positioning the New

From June 24 to September 20, 2008, the West Vancouver Museum is proud to present Selwyn Pullan: Positioning the New featuring a comprehensive survey of the work of Canadian photographer Selwyn Pullan. In a career spanning over 50 years, Pullan played a critical role in advancing West Coast modern architecture. He documented numerous residences and institutional projects for British Columbia’s leading architects in an intense and innovative period in the three decades following WWII.

Pullan studied photography at the Los Angeles Art Center (now the Art Center College of Design), graduating in 1950. Architectural photography, then a relatively new profession, had emerged in parallel to modernism and advances in architecture in North America during the late 1930s, and Pullan found his niche in this genre. Pullan’s photographs promoted the new style to a populace eager to embrace a modern way of living. His images were frequently included in photo essays in major design and architecture periodicals nation-wide.

Pullan was sought out specifically for his inventive composition and ability to contextualize new buildings. Pullan captured the spare aesthetics and spiritual essence of the work of architects such as Ron Thom, Fred Hollingsworth, Arthur Erickson and Barry Downs, among numerous others. Although primarily known for his architectural photography, Pullan also produced a substantial body of work depicting Vancouver’s urban landscape, portraiture, industry, fashion and design.

This retrospective demonstrates the photographer’s intimate connection to the development of modernism on the West Coast of Canada and highlights the social, economic and cultural forces that changed the face of Vancouver and the region during the postwar boom.

The West Vancouver Museum will be holding an opening reception on Tuesday, June 24th from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. For more information about the exhibition and other programs, please call 604.925.7295 or visit