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Paul Henri Pivert was born in 1943 to Andre and Jeanne (Marcil) Pivert. His siblings were Yvonne, Roland, Suzanne, and twin Paulette. The family had moved to Grande Prairie in 1934 and to the Flying Shot Lake District in 1939 to land rented by Andre’s cousin, Gaby Basly (N 36-7-7 W6th). Paul and Paulette attended Lucky Tree School. In 1950 the Pivert family bought a farm in the Millarston district (near Dimsdale, N 21-70-7 W6th).
Paul inherited his interest in photography from his father and uncles, excellent amateur photographers who documented their own activities and community events from the time they arrived in the south Peace in 1929.
Paul’s photography career began as a teenager when his brother Roland gave him an old folding Kodak camera. Paul studied photography books and practiced on everything: the dog, the family, his friends at school and on the bus. Paul graduated from St. Joseph High School, Grande Prairie, in 1962. He went on to study at Fairview College, graduating in 1964, and continued his photography on the yearbook committee.
In December 1966 Paul was hired by Panda Camera and in 1973 he became the sole owner of a new company, Panda Camera (1973) Ltd. In 1976, Paul also opened a dedicated portrait studio, the “House of Portraits” (later “Studio on the Park”) located in an historic home on the corner of 102 Street and 102 Avenue. Paul’s photography business continued to operate until 2002. Paul remained an active member of the Grande Prairie Photo Club and avid amateur photographer even after the sale of his business. At the 2010 Arctic Winter Games, he was one of four mentors for photography students.
For a short period of time, Paul was employed by Great West Life.
Although he never married, Paul had several serious girlfriends who appear in his records and photographs, including: Elizabeth McBride, Karen Wallace, Rachel Donovan, and Carole Peterson.
Paul also served two terms on Grande Prairie City Council from 1978 to 1983. Member of Wapiti Corridor committee.
Recipient of the 2012 Beth Sheehan Archives Award from South Peace Regional Archives. Donated his photographic studio records to the Archives 2010 -2012.
Paul Pivert died on February 17, 2014 in Grande Prairie at the age of 70.