RCI Skypes with Provenance Researcher and Curatorial Assistant at the National Gallery of Canada

Posted on Friday March 27, 2015

Former Renfrew Collegiate graduate, now Provenance Researcher and Curatorial Assistant at the National Gallery of Canada, Skyped Mrs. Edwards-Budden's Grade 10 Careers class on Friday February 27th.

Kirsten Appleyard explained to students what her job as a researcher and curator was like, as well as gave helpful tips applicable to all careers.

Appleyard told students that while in high school, she did not know exactly what she wanted to pursue. “Don’t be afraid to explore different interests; you won’t know you like something until you try it,” she said.

Appleyard once wanted to be a doctor, but became interested in her current field when she was exposed to Liberal Arts. She received her Masters of Arts, Art History from the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. She lived in France for a year, and even received a research grant to work in Florence Italy while writing her master's thesis at Notre Dame.


“It was really neat how [Appleyard] ended up in a field that she never even thought about,” said Grade 10 student, Reid Hall. “It was very relatable to me right now.

Among the tips Appleyard gave students was to make connections with professionals in your field. “Networking is important in the professional world; [it is] a way to get your name out,” she said.

Now, Appleyard works at the National Gallery of Canada, where she researches the ownership history of paintings in the Gallery's European collection, primarily to ensure that they were never stolen by the Nazis

“I found her story about discovering her career path interesting,” said Tim Meighen, another Grade 10 student. “It’s helpful to know that it is okay to change your mind and explore new subjects.”

Appleyard is currently assisting with the curating of an upcoming Monet exhibition at the National Gallery.

Article written by Taylor Virgin

Photo submitted by Charlene Edwards-Budden