Edward McCann, 76 (Interview on August 2, 2021)
Edward McCann is a retired museum curator who curated various exhibitions at the Atwater Library. Before moving to Vancouver in the Spring of 2021, McCann combined his admiration for the Atwater Library with his experience at curatorial practices to voluntarily curate five exhibitions (including The Artistic Mr. Wilson – Photographs from the McCann Collection) and help with other exhibitions at the library.
McCann prefers to read nonfiction, such as photography essays, biographies and history books. His collection is mostly about books on photography. To find new books, he searched through bookshops and libraries’ sales.
McCann’s favourite books are A Box of Photographs, by Roger Grenier (Chicago, London: University of Chicago Press, 2013) (from his own collection) and Scottish Photography: The First Thirty Years, by Sara Stevenson and A. D. Morrison-Low (Edinburgh: National Museums Scotland, 2015) (from the Atwater Library collection).
In A Box of Photographs, Grenier talks about his relationship to photography and the people he knew in his working life and his personal life. Although the cover photo has a sad story behind it, this is a happy book about Grenier’s experience with photography told in short and illustrated chapters. McCann enjoys this 100-pages-long book especially because of its concise and memorable content.
In Scottish Photography: The First Thirty Years, the authors gathered several historical photographs held by Scottish museums to discuss art in Scotland. They also examine the work of professional photographers from the nineteenth century, such as George Washington Wilson, whose works McCann is particularly interested in. McCann sees this book as a wonderful reference book to those who, like him, have photography as a passion.