The McMichael Canadian Art Collection

Launch Site →
McMichael Font Moodboard

The McMichael Canadian Art Collection needed help articulating it’s full mandate. We worked together to showcase their increased focus on featuring artists from the Indigenous peoples of Canada.

A fixture in the Canadian art landscape—and an impressive landmark—since 1966, the gallery's impressive collection has grown over time, along with its mandate. Coming out of its 50-year celebration, the McMichael was looking for a new design for its marketing website, as well as a Shopify design for its online store. The goals were to improve navigation for all ages, and shift the brand perception to be fully representative of Canadian art (from Indigenous art to Group of Seven, traditional and contemporary).

The McMichael had a goal to grow attendance (by 40% overall). To do that, the new website designs needed to challenge the notion of the McMichael as "the Group of Seven gallery," and instead position it as a cultural icon of Canadian identity through art that includes the Group of Seven works as well as traditional and contemporary art that includes Indigenous artists.

We worked with 20+ stakeholders to redesign the McMichael website's architecture + aesthetic to encourage greater engagement across expanding programs with an increased focus on eCommerce. Working with the McMichael's strong brand direction, we created composites for the marketing site and a Shopify template, both of which were brought to life by the McMichael's technical team. At launch, website traffic was up 30% from the same time period the year before, the McMichael saw a spike in ticket sales that far exceeded expectations, and restaurant reservations increased 4x over, reportedly because of how great the restaurant facilities look online.

“We chose to work with rTraction because it was clear from our first meeting that we had the same values, the team understood our brand, and that they would design with our desired outcomes and best interests in mind. The project ran on-time (or early), and the results have been overwhelmingly positive.”


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