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Blockbuster winter and spring 2017 Montréal museum exhibitions

Famed Russian-French artist Marc Chagall, French couturier Jean Paul Gaultier and legendary Canadian photographer William Notman take centre stage in blockbuster exhibitions at Montréal museums this winter and spring 2017. Chagall: Colour and Music at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is the largest exhibition ever devoted to Marc Chagall (1887-1985) in Canada, featuring some 500 works and documents—paintings, collages, watercolours, sculptures, stained glass windows and ceramics—which show how Chagall’s aesthetic and artistic world is imbued with music. The exhibition includes his creations for the stage, notably 40 rarely-seen costumes and sets for the ballets and operas Aleko (1942), The Firebird (1945), Daphnis et Chloé (1958) and The Magic Flute (1967). No less than famed art critic Robert Hughes called Chagall “the quintessential Jewish artist of the 20th century.” Chagall: Colour and Music runs from January 28 to June 11. After such a great adventure, “The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk” seen by two million visitors in twelve cities over five years couldn’t end like this… As cherry on the cake, as a very early Christmas gift or as a 2017 good resolution, the @mbamtl is presenting a surprise return of the most incredible wedding moments by… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: December 9 to 15

The festive season truly fires up this week in Montréal – the city celebrates with outdoor events and markets brimming with local treats, Santa’s doing photo-op visits, The Nutcracker ballet graces the stage, along with Christmas concerts, a Leonard Cohen tribute and more. Festive fun outdoors In the heart of downtown, outdoor market Le Grand Marché de Noël de Montréal glitters alongside Canada’s tallest Christmas tree outside Place des Arts – find locally made gifts and goodies, activities for kids, live music and more. While there, take a turn on the colourful 13 giant zoetropes of this year’s Luminothérapie interactive outdoor art. Merry Montréal adds entertainment, a market, fire pits, films and warm drinks to the ambience of Old Montréal, and fireworks light up the Old Port’s Natrel Skating Rink on Dec. 10. Live music and circus, food and drink, weekend visits with Santa – and with friendly sheep and amusing elves too! – make Noël dans le Parc a must at downtown’s Place Émilie-Gamelin and at Parc des Compagnons and Parc Lahaie in the Plateau. Over at the Olympic Stadium Esplanade’s Village Mammouth go ice skating and tube sliding, snack on food truck fare and shop at the winter market. Find Santa and more seasonal things to do in our round-op of winter activities for… / Read More →

Blockbuster autumn 2016 Montréal museum exhibitions

The famed photographs of controversial American photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, as well as those of William Notman, Canada’s most important 19th-century photographer, take centre stage in Montreal this autumn, alongside the 2016 edition of La Biennale de Montréal in a city that is an exciting and trailblazing global hub for contemporary art. The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts blockbuster exhibition Focus: Perfection – Robert Mapplethorpe deals with issues of gender, race and sexuality, and features Mapplethorpe’s famed photographs of New York’s underground BDSM scene, of which he was an active participant, as well as many celebrity portraits, including Richard Gere, Andy Warhol, Yoko Ono, Deborah Harry and Mapplethorpe’s soulmate, punk-rock icon Patti Smith. In all, there are some 300 works on view, mainly black-and-white photographs but also colour prints, Polaroids and Mapplethorpe’s famed X, Y and Z portfolios, all three on display in their entirety: X shows S&M scenarios; Y, floral still lifes; and Z, nude portraits of African-American men. Get a behind-the-scenes look at the exhibition by clicking here. Focus: Perfection – Robert Mapplethorpe continues to Jan. 22, 2017. Meanwhile, as part of Montreal’s 375th anniversary celebrations and the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation, the McCord Museum presents Notman, A… / Read More →

See art among the skyscrapers in Montréal

A walking tour is probably the best way to get the sense of any city. But when you follow one of the many cool itineraries suggested by the folks at Art Public Montréal, you’ll get the best sense you can of Montréal’s artsy core. This is a city where culture shines year-round and in every detail, down to the amazing public art you can visit for free! So grab a map, your walking shoes and your camera, and explore this crop of art works among the skyscrapers of downtown Montréal. Monument à Sir Wilfrid Laurier (1953), created by Émile Brunet Did you know Brunet also designed the Canadian pavilion for the Exposition universelle in Paris in 1937? His portrait of the former prime minister that stands in Dominion Square represents Laurier’s successful union of western and eastern Canada, thanks to the symbolic use of the maple leaf. Note the bed of flowers, too, at Laurier’s feet: French lilies, Scottish thistles, English roses and Irish clovers mix to represent Canada’s four founding nations. Autoportrait (2012), created by Nicolas Baier Baier is a young and active artist whose works you can see at the nearby Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, as well… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: August 19 to 25

Montréal feels lively and carefree this week as the sun shines on family-friendly outdoor sports event Jackalope, the Fashion & Design Festival, the St-Laurent street fair, pretty parks and open-air bars, all with music and food to keep us going. Soak up summer Skateboarding, motocross, fixed gear biking, bouldering and a massive watergun fight await at JACKALOPE at Olympic Park, Aug. 19-21– but the family-friendly festival (kids 10 years and under get in free! And there’s a babysitting service!) isn’t only about extreme sports: chill out in a hammock, do some yoga, listen to live music from High Klassified, The Posterz and more artists, and eat great food from food trucks – later on, go to official after parties in Mile End. HOT AIR BALLOON SUNSET🎈#bucketlist #7yearani Une photo publiée par @sallysaleh le 15 Août 2016 à 17h23 PDT Slow down by swinging to the sound of musical art installation 21 Swings outside Place des Arts, or cruising along the Saint-Lawrence River on a laid-back brunch, afternoon or gourmet dinner cruise with Croisières AML. Or float above the city and countryside: hot air balloon and music festival International des Montgolfières Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu runs to Aug. 21 in nearby Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu. Play time Watch the final three days of the Rio 2016… / Read More →

What’s happening during Montréal’s Italian Week

Montréal will be honouring the beauty and diversity of Italy through music, culture, food and folklore at Italian Week, held August 5 to 14. The agenda includes an outdoor opera, a star-lit fashion show, classical and popular music concerts, a Fiat 500 car exhibit, a dessert contest and much more. Now boarding for la dolce vita! Food You can’t even mention Italy without thinking about the country’s cuisine. At 2 p.m. on August 14, Saint-Laurent Boulevard’s Shamrock Stage will turn into a buttery battlefield with the official Best Coda d’Aragosta Contest. Before your very eyes, master pastry chefs will be going head to head to impress a handpicked jury of discerning eaters. Rest assured that once the deliberations are over, the flaky creations will be available for you to sample! But if it leaves you still feeling hungry, try one of these fantastic pizzerias or authentic Italian restaurants. Meanwhile, the Ateliers & Saveurs culinary school in the Old Port will be offering several cooking classes and wine tastings inspired by the flavours of Italy. Treat your taste buds while feasting your eyes on their fantastic heritage space! Culture If there’s an exhibit you should check out this week, it’s Pompeii. Running… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: July 15 to 21

Sunny days and almost too much fun to handle make Montréal the place to be in mid-July: comedy, circus and music festivals fill the city with out-of-this-world performances, alongside an international film festival, a games festival, a world-class fireworks competition and more entertainment for all ages. Festival laughs Star-studded comedy festival Just For Laughs starts up this week with a free outdoor street festival outside Place des Arts – don’t miss the Mado’s Got Talent drag queen show on July 19 and nightly musical Jukebox – plus new editions of The Ethnic Show hosted by Rachid Badouri at Club Soda, and The Nasty Show  at Métropolis, a seriously dirty good time hosted by Mike Ward, who also performs a free outdoor show outside Place des Arts on July 16 at 9 pm. JFL’s “underground” program OFF-JFL begins with one-woman show 24 Hours with Mary Lynn Rajskub and new stand-up from Tom Green, with more shows running throughout the fest. Meanwhile, for kids there’s the V8energy labyrinth on de Maisonneuve Boulevard, daytime shows by puppeteer Jacques Boutin, dancer-clown Fifi Bric-à-Brac and more. Add to all that Zoofest, dedicated to wild indie humour and a fab drag show or two, and Oh My Fest!, celebrating a breadth of local YouTuber talent…. / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: February 5 to 11

Montréal takes the chill off February this week with food festivals that celebrate poutine, chocolate and full-course meals, alongside winter festivals Fêtes des neiges and Igloofest and a glittering array of opera, art, dance, theatre, film and live music. Winter fun Whatever the weather, head to scenic Parc Jean-Drapeau for the final weekend of family-friendly Fêtes des neiges, a massive activity park featuring tube sliding, zip lining, ice skating, a toddler play zone, hot beverages, delicious snacks and lively entertainment on Saturday and Sunday. The winter sports action continues at the Bonsecours Basin ice skating rink in the Old Port and at the Village MAMMOUTH at Olympic Park (also home to the Biodôme, Botanical Garden and Planetarium). Nighttime stays bright as massive outdoor party Igloofest – also in its final weekend – gets people dancing in their parkas at the Old Port – this Friday dance to Michael Mayer, Tale of Us and more artists, while Saturday brings Brodinski, Swindle, Laura Scavo and more to the festival’s two stages. And the Montréal Canadiens try to get back on top of their NHL hockey game in three home rounds at the Bell Centre this week, facing the Oilers on Saturday, Hurricanes… / Read More →

Spring Break for families

Whether your kids want to get out in the snow or play games indoors, find fun, memorable and even free things to do for every kid at every age during Spring Break in Montréal, February 27 to March 6. Free for the whole family Downtown Montréal sparkles during MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, February 18 to March 5, especially at the winter festival’s free outdoor site outside Place des Arts in the Quartier des spectacles – ride an illuminated ice slide and Ferris wheel, play games and activities, roast marshmallows over fire pits, see music and circus performances and much more. On February 27, let the kids stay up late for all-nighter event Nuit Blanche, with indoor and outdoor activities and entertainment for all ages. Check out the art brightening up underground passageways linking downtown Montréal skyscrapers and malls (Complexe Desjardins, Place Ville Marie, Place Montréal Trust, Centre Eaton) during Art Souterrain. Outdoors, walk, run, snowshoe or cross-country ski in the city’s big parks – Mount Royal, La Fontaine and Jean-Drapeau – on March 2 watch the world’s top cross-country skiers compete in Ski Tour Canada 2016, with Mount Royal’s Beaver Lake Pavilion the start and finish point. And explore nature beyond the city centre at the… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal January 8 to 14

The year is already off to a bold start in Montréal with snow-bright outdoor entertainment to play with and dance to, the Happening Gourmand restaurant fest, internationally acclaimed dance, theatre and film, and live music from Tchaikovsky to Mark Farina. Snow days With memories of 2015 fading it’s time to make some new ones. Montreal brightens up your winter with all kinds of activities and entertainment in the coming months. Play on the 30 illuminated see-saws of interactive art exhibition Luminothérapie until January 31, with animated digital art projections throughout the Quartier des Spectacles. If you love to dance and love being outdoors, get yourself to Igloofest, Montreal’s biggest winter electronic music festival, at Jacques-Cartier Quay in the Old Port, opening January 14 with music by Bonobo, Lunice, Heron Preston and more. Go ice skating and sliding at Village MAMMOUTH at the Olympic Stadium Esplanade, or skate to music at the Old Port’s Bonsecours Basin rink, with happy hour every evening. On the ice at the Bell Centre, the Montréal Canadiens take on the Penguins on January 9 and the Blackhawks on January 14. Seek out warmth and art at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the Musée d’art contemporain and Galerie… / Read More →