Canada


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When did old painted signs on walls become known as ‘ghost’ signs, and who coined the phrase? These questions crop up often in my discussions with others, and on my tours, and I always have to hold my hand up and say I didn’t invent […]

Tracing the Origins of ‘Ghost’ Signs


Montréal street scene with ghostsign in archival image
‘Sur les murs‘ (‘on the walls’) is the first book about ghostsigns to come out of Canada. It is a French language publication, as it is set in Montréal, but contains many English language signs. This reflects the bilingual history of the city and the […]

‘Sur Les Murs’: Montréal’s Bilingual Ghostsigns


Scaffolding on a ghostsign for the Little Theatre in Vancouver 3
This ghostsign for the Little Theatre in Vancouver is the subject of a unique preservation effort prompted by the efforts of the Grandview Heritage Group. In response to a letter sent to the developers currently at work on the building they have been told that […]

A novel approach to ghostsign conservation from Vancouver   Recently updated !




Signpainters as work on the restoration of a ghostsign in Cambridge Ontario
The restoration of this ghostsign in Canada is part of an effort to reinvigorate the downtown area of Cambridge, Ontario.  Read some observations on the process of restoring this sign and also this article celebrating the completion of the piece.

Pandora Range McClary’s Stoves sign repainted in Cambridge, Ontario   Recently updated !


Berchowitz faux ghostsign from British Columbia by John Schrantz 10
Sometimes hand painted signs on buildings are created to look old and weathered intentionally.  The example pictured (original photo on Flickr) was produced in 2003 for the Disney film, ‘Miracle’.  (Does anyone have a clip showing where and how it features in the film?)  Another […]

Faux ghostsigns




1920’s Harold Lloyd Film Poster found in Vancouver from VanArts on Vimeo. This sign continues to win affections, and now there is this new material and analysis from Vancouver Arts.   See the story so far on this post and this one.  

Vancouver Arts profile the Grandma’s Boy reveal (with @VanArts)   Recently updated !






Hand Painted Type alphabet by Umesh 1
Perhaps being in Cambodia has sensitised me to the world of Ghostsigns beyond my home shores. Or maybe awareness of the project has encouraged those from around the world to make contact. Whatever it is, I thought it was time for a round-up of what’s […]

Ghostsigns World Tour