Skip to Main Content

Museum and Heritage Studies

The Nickle Galleries were founded in 1979 with a generous donation by Mr. Samuel C. Nickle, matched by a grant from The Province of Alberta and supported by donations from several founding patrons. Since its opening in 1979, the Nickle has championed contemporary art, textiles, and numismatics in western Canada.

Since September of 1996, the Nickle Galleries have also been the coordinators and focal point of the Minor program in Museum and Heritage Studies. This is a minor programme providing students with theoretical knowledge and practical experience in the Cultural and Heritage sector.

Numismatics Collection

The Nickle Coin Collection is one of the most important numismatic collections in Canada. It is a rich teaching and research resource, providing for the interest and enjoyment of the University and the community as a whole.

The large founding donation was presented to the University of Calgary in 1980 by Carl O. Nickle, and has since been enlarged through the generosity of The Nickle Family Foundation and others.

Rug and Textile Collection

Nickle Galleries is home to a rich and varied collection of textiles. Inaugurated with a significant donation by Dr Lloyd Erikson and the long-term loan of the Jean and Marie Erikson Carpet and Textile Collection, it has grown steadily since 2005. The majority of the Nickle's textile holdings are knotted pile carpets from West and Central Asia. The collection is particularly strong in nineteenth century Caucasian and Persian carpets of tribal and village origin. There are also significant examples of 17th century carpets, many woven in Western Anatolia for export.

Art Collection

The Collection of Art at the Nickle Galleries, initiated on campus before the museum itself, is an extensive grouping of modern and contemporary art focusing on Western Canada, but extending across the country. It consists of over thirty five hundred prints, drawings, photographs, paintings, sculptures and works in various electronic media.