Hugo Viewegar

(1873-1930) Hugo was a wealthy German immigrant that moved to Canada with his family in 1912. Viewegar attempted to establish a homestead near Stony Plain but ill health forced him to move to Edmonton a year later, where he established a studio. His photographic specialty, the coloured autochrome, marked him as almost unique within contemporary Canada and certainly within the West. The only colour photograph of the North-West Mounted Police's Musical Ride and Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show were taken by Viewegar in the summer of 1914. In July 1914 Hugo was commissioned to take a colour photograph of the outgoing Governor General; when war was declared with Germany two weeks later, Viewegar came under suspicion and saw his studio, assets, and right to mobility seized as he was now deemed an “enemy alien.” Viewegar and his family relocated to a farm near Edgerton, where he lived until his death in 1930. Many rare Viewegar originals and copies hold a special place in the Edgerton Museum.

Category: the Artist