Otto Graser Jr.

    • Otto Graser
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    We regret to advise of the death of Otto Graser Jr. on 6 April 2020 at the Ottawa Hospital General Campus in Ottawa ON at the age 87 years.

    Born in Galt ON, Otto was raised in Montreal QC, attended Montreal Central High School and then worked as a draughtsman for the Link­Belt Company. He moved to England to study at The Polytechnic School of Architecture in London and graduated from the Planning and Architecture programme in 1961. Returning to Canada, Otto received a Masters in Architecture from McGill University in 1964 and moved to Ottawa where he was employed with the architectural firm Affleck, Desbarats, Dimakopoulos, Lebensold, Sise (ARCOP) and worked on the National Arts Centre. Otto joined the Public Service in 1965 and worked for the Department of Indian Affairs and the Department of National Defence until his retirement.  While with DND he designed buildings on both coasts, at Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt and CFB Halifax.

    In his 50s, Graser took early retirement and  pursued his love for books and his talent for art. He opened a bookstore  - Arlington Books in Centretown -  and founded Black Squirrel Press, a print shop that he ran out of the basement of his home on Fourth Avenue with an old letterpress machine.  He was a prolific visual artist in painting, etching, printmaking, book design, photography, pottery, and computer graphics. His artwork has appeared in or on various Canadian books, anthologies and journals, and he has participated in shows in Montreal, London and Ottawa. Otto was a member of the Ottawa Camera Club and a founding father of the Ottawa Press Gang. He is the former proprietor of Black Squirrel Press and Arlington Books.

    A Memorial service will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that In Memoriam donations be made to Arteast-Ottawa . Online condolences can be sent to the Ottawa Citizen.{khApr2020}