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Indepth Arts News:

"The Art of Persuasion: The Echenberg Collection "
2001-05-02 until 2001-06-10
Bishop’s University Art Gallery
Lennoxville, QC, CA

The Eastern Townships Research Centre and the Art Gallery of Bishop’s University are proud to present The Echenberg Collection, featuring objects that were used to promote manufacturing and commercial firms in the Townships from the end of the 19th century to the first decades of the 20th century. The exhibition is curated by Monique Nadeau-Saumier, Director of the Colby Curtis Museum in Stanstead, and has been organized with the help of Dr. Robert MacGregor of the Williams School of Business and Economics.

The opening of the exhibition will be held on Wednesday, May 2, 2001, from 5pm to 7pm at the Bishop’s University Art Gallery. Mr. Edwin Echenberg will be present at this celebration and the Eastern Townships Research Centre will launch the 18th edition of the Journal of Eastern Townships Studies, which has been dedicated to the Echenberg Collection.

Mr. Edwin (Eddie) Echenberg, former Sherbrooke merchant and resident of the region, has patiently developed this collection. The Collection will allow the greater public to discover the rich and diversified industrial, commercial and tourist enterprises through various promotional devices, which illustrate the iconography and marketing strategies of their time. Most of the artifacts to be displayed are three dimensional and prime examples of packaging and advertising ephemera produced for and by Eastern Townships’ trade and industry up to WWII. Thanks to the passion of one collector, a large part of the region’s history has been preserved.

The collector, Mr. Edwin Echenberg, owner of a clothing store on Sherbrooke’s Wellington Street, first became interested in old coins and became the President of the Canadian Stamp Association in 1963. In 1967, after visiting numerous antique stores in the region, he noticed the large number of objects that exhibited the name of businesses and shops from Sherbrooke or the Eastern Townships. From this, he was inspired to begin his collection.

As well as reflecting the history of regional commerce, the exhibition also illustrates the values of an era and those of a society. The history of packaging processes reflect developments in advertising which exerted a profound influence on society by stimulating, if not creating, a taste for consumer goods. The iconography used in advertising follows closely one favored in the USA and helps to confirm how much the American presence was felt in the Townships.

The Echenberg Collection projects an image of vibrant economical life in the Eastern Townships and should not be missed.

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