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Alexander Johnstone Musgrove was born in St George, Edinburgh on the 17th November 1881 to Elizabeth Musgrove (née Bruce) and William Musgrove, a housepainter and artist. He studied drawing and painting at The Glasgow School of Art from 1904 to 1910, and became a member of staff while continuing to focus on his own work. He exhibited widely during this period. In 1913 he emigrated to Winnipeg, Canada where he established the Winnipeg School of Art and the city's first public gallery. The following year he founded the Winnipeg Sketch Club, and later co-founded the Manitoba Society of Artists. In 1922 he left his position as director of the Winnipeg School of Art to open his own studio, where he could focus on his own work and conduct classes. He returned to teaching at the Winnipeg School of Art thereafter and acted as director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery until his death in 1952. He appears to have fought in the First World War, and is listed on The Glasgow School of Art's World War One Roll of Honour.
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Sources: Canadian Heritage Information Network: http://www.rcip-chin.gc.ca.