poetry museum toronto

Toronto is getting a new museum all about poetry

The name Taras Shevchenko may not be familiar with you if you're not Ukrainian, but if you are, it just might represent hundreds of years of reverence for a national figure. 

What you still may not know, however, is that there's an entire museum dedicated to him in Toronto. For years, it's been housed at 1614 Bloor Street West, but now it's moving just a few doors down into much newer digs at 1604 Bloor Street West.

Bloor West Village locals may have noticed an austere gigantic portrait going up at the new address where construction is currently taking place.

The museum was actually first established in Oakville back in 1952, so it's not the first time it's changed locations. Unfortunately, the original museum was destroyed by arson in 1988.

The museum actually published a tri-lingual collection of Shevchenko's 1800s poetry in Ukrainian, English and French, and according to their website, "Canada has created more Shevchenkiana than any other English speaking country."

Director Lyudmyla Pogoryelova is unaware of what will be taking the place of the old museum, but says the new museum will have four galleries, a library, several offices, a studio space where art classes will be held, and an upper floor gallery available for rentals.

The original museum has been closed since July 15, and the new location will open to visitors on October 20. 

A grand opening celebration, starting at 2:30 p.m. on the second floor, will feature performances of Ukrainian music and readings of Shevchenko's poetry in multiple languages, as well as a special guest: manager of funds and collections of the National Shevchenko Museum in Kyiv, Yulia Shylenko.

Lead photo by

Amy Carlberg


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