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This text is part of the special section Museums

The end of the year brings its share of novelties in the programming of museums, particularly in Quebec. Christmas entertainment, contemporary art and exhibition with a social flavor are on the menu of the festivities.

McCord Stewart Museum: Enchanted Worlds

the Montreal social history museum returns, again this year, with a special program for the Holidays. Near the museum, on Victoria Street, the famous mechanical Christmas display cases from Ogilvy will be on display from November 25, sold to the museum by Holt Renfrew in 2018. Created in 1947 by the German toy factory Steiff — the one of the most famous of its kind in the world — these animated windows feature The mill in the forest, a Bavarian setting inhabited by a multitude of stuffed animals. Just like the latter, another showcase was bought by the big name in the city center: The enchanted village, which people aged 17 and under can admire for free in a room in the museum. Interactive activities are also on the program. These Christmas scenes have been part of Montreal’s collective imagination for decades; their inclusion in the McCord Museum’s seasonal collection guarantees their long-term preservation.

In addition, the Welcome! We play ? is back for a fourth edition: visitors can offer a used toy in good condition to a child from a family who has recently arrived in Quebec by attaching the history of the toy. These gifts will be given to the children of beneficiary families of the Center social d’aide aux immigrants.

Practical information : Windows The mill in the forest and The enchanted village are on display until January 8.

Montreal Museum of Contemporary Art: Nelson Henricks

This exhibition, bearing the name of the artist, has just been inaugurated at Montreal museum dedicated to contemporary art. The Montreal visual artist presents two new works: the first installation, entitled Don’t You Like the Green of A ? (Don’t you like the green of A?), explores the resonance between letters and colors, in reference to the American painter Joan Mitchell, a member of the abstract expressionist current. On this occasion, MAC en famille presents the Chromatic Resonance activity, an artistic expression workshop to do with children.

The second facility, Heads Will Roll (Heads Will Fall) explores the underlying protest force of popular and experimental music. Through several videos featuring performers, musicians and dancers, Henricks reinterprets the concert of saucepans that accompanied the demonstrations of the spring maple, held in opposition to the increase in tuition fees in Quebec. It is the percussionist Stuart Jackson who occurs in particular in one of the videos by beating the rhythm on kitchen accessories.

Finally, Henricks offers a selection of 15 short films produced by Andy Warhol in the 1960s and called Screen Tests (loaned for the occasion by the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh). The approach of the star artist of pop art: filming motionless people for a few minutes until the film runs out. These images invite the visitor to reflect on the action of looking and being looked at. This inclusion in Henricks’ exhibition is a tribute to Warhol’s considerable contribution to the experimentation of video art. Meetings with Nelson Henricks and curator Mark Lanctôt (November 23 in French and January 18 in English) as well as a concert by Stuart Jackson (November 30) are also planned at the Musée d’art contemporain.

Practical information : The exhibition Nelson Henricks is presented until April 10, 2023. The MAC en famille is offered the first Saturdays of the month, from December 3, 2022 to 1er April 2023.

Pop Museum: a change of scenery

The attractive exhibition presented in the Trois-Rivières museum is dedicated to the art of furnishing from a historical perspective. Through five periods, from the end of the 19e century and throughout the XXe century, are presented Quebec domestic decors and their perspective with today’s modern versions. Each living room is staged between past and present: kitchen, living room, bedroom, not forgetting the famous basement of the bungalows, renewed over time into a multifunctional room. Gone is the retro decor of the 1970s: make way for the personalized use of space. Present outside rural houses until the middle of the 19th centurye century, the unmissable “Bécosse” is also one of those places that have undergone a spectacular evolution. Finally, this collection also includes decorations and Victorian furniture from between the two centuries that characterized the interior of upper-class families. This exhibition also makes the link between artisanal furniture and the rural way of life, a vector of carpentry know-how. This exhibition, peppered with portraits that have left their mark on Quebec cabinetmaking, will please everyone.

Practical information : The exhibition Change of scenery is presented until March 5, 2023.

National Gallery of Canada: 2022 Sobey Art Award

This year marks the 20e anniversary of this remarkable prize which supports the careers of contemporary Canadian artists thanks to very substantial grants (the first prize receives $100,000; the four other finalists, $25,000). He is also internationally recognized as one of the most prestigious and generous in contemporary art. This year, the five finalists, who belong to visible communities, cast their gaze on themes of the modern world: feminism, decolonialism, spirituality, equity. Each of their installations draws on history to offer a vision of the future through performances that merge art and activism.

Tyshan Wright, visual artist from Nova Scotia, revisits the traditional musical instruments of the Jamaican Maroons, from whom he is a descendant. Krystle Silverfox, multidisciplinary artist and member of the Selkirk First Nation, lives in the Yukon. She works mainly with natural materials and offers a reflection on her identity as an indigenous woman artist. Living in the Prairie region, multimedia artist Divya Mehra is interested in questions of equity, diversity and inclusion in the era of postcolonialism. The finalist artist from Quebec, Stanley Juillet, wonders about the place of the human, particularly in the context of globalization. This sculptor and performer of Haitian origin creates interdisciplinary works to denounce social violence, particularly among marginalized minorities. Finally, Azza El Siddique, born in Sudan and living in Ontario, creates sensory installations using in particular the perfumes of the Orient, inspired by the architecture of North Africa and the Middle East. In constant evolution, his work symbolizes the entropy linked to the fatality of death and degradation.

Practical information : The works of the 2022 Sobey Art Awards finalists are exhibited in contemporary art rooms until March 12, 2023.

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