Montreal galleries museums

Emergence & Convergence, PHI Centre

What Montreal’s reopened galleries and museums are doing in July

These seven cultural institutions are open or reopening soon.

A rundown of some of the offerings from the larger museums and galleries in Montreal that are now able to open.

How to reopen the world has everything to do with how to be a better ally and how to envision a future in which economic security isn’t predicated on environmental destruction. If you, like me, are lucky enough to have benefited from the CERB and the perhaps paralyzing thoughtful hours that bestowed on you, hopefully you’ve made of that what you can.

I keep watching a short dance piece by Jamar Roberts, Cooped. In Roberts’ words, a “potent fever dream that aims to capture the fear of sickness, and the anxiety of quarantine as it relates to the historical trauma of Black bodies being relegated to live in and within confined spaces.” It’s rare to find a work that so fully encapsulates the historical moment of its creation. I’m still unsure of how to be a better ally, not least of all because white certitude has such terrifying ramifications, but in my uncertainty I am advising any and everyone to go and watch Cooped.  

Meanwhile, Montreal museums and galleries and many other cultural institutions in the city are trying to position themselves as they reopen, and John Zeppetelli, the director of the Musée d’Art Contemporaine de Montréal (MAC) in fact references Cooped as part of the MAC’s list of resources in response to the global Black Lives Matter movement. Gallery programming works not unlike cinema, with years of planning behind the scenes prior to the work being shown to an audience, so a lot of the programming is the same as it was before closures, but I surmise that it can still be viewed differently.

La Guilde

You still have time to see works from the fifth edition of the BACA (Contemporary Native Art Biennial), Kahwatsiretátie: Teionkwariwaienna Tekariwaiennawahkòntie (on until July 19). David Garneau, one of the curators, describes the approach of the Biennial: “Kinship is not just the subject of Kahwatsiretátie, it also informs our curatorial method. In addition to choosing fine works of art and placing them in good display relations with each other, we also asked many of the senior artists to invite “kin” to exhibit with them […] Like a ceremony or party where invited guests invite their own guests, we want to expand the circle to include relations we did not yet know.”

1356 Sherbrooke W., free. See more details here.

PHI Centre

The PHI Centre is presenting Emergence & Convergence, which Phoebe Greenberg, the PHI’s founder and director, describes as “an invitation to immerse ourselves in an exhibition which investigates our humanity in relationship with our planet and all living beings.”

To Sept. 6, 315 St-Paul W., $16.35–$21.80. See more details about la Guilde here.

Fondation PHI

The Fondation PHI, meanwhile, is presenting Relations: Diaspora and Painting, a group show curated by Cheryl Sim examining “the complex and multiple meanings of diaspora, its condition, and its experiences as expressed through painting.”

July 8–Nov. 29, 451 St-Jean, free. See more details about Fondation PHI here.

Fonderie Darling

The Fonderie’s dual exhibition of Vikky Alexander’s photographic and sculptural installation Nordic Rock and Michael Eddy’s print and video work referencing Charlie Hebdo, Je Suis both continue until Aug. 30. Additionally, the Fonderie will be continuing their yearly tradition of installing a site-specific work in Place Publique. This year the Montreal duo Anna Eyler and Nicoias Lapointe are presenting D.o.t.T.D. (Dance of the Techno-Demon), part hot-dog stand, part capitalist critique.

745 Ottawa, Fonderie’s regular programming: $5; D.o.t.T.D.: free. See more details about Fonderie Darling here.

Musée d’art contemporain (MAC)

The MAC’s selection of video work from their archive, Points of Light, continues until Oct. 11, as well as Painting Nature With a Mirror, the exhibition of Canadian painting from the 1980s.

185 Ste-Catherine W., $4–$10. See more details about Musée d’art contemporain (MAC) here.

Museum of Fine Arts

Following Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives, which is presently sold out, the MBAM will be presenting Paris in the Days of Post-Impressionism: Signac and the Indépendants from July 4 to Nov. 15.

1380 Sherbrooke W., $16–$24. See more details about the Museum of Fine Arts here.

McCord Museum

Wearing our Identity — The First Peoples Collection continues as part of the McCord’s permanent collection. The McCord is also showing an exhibition of work by Serge Chapleau, a Quebec cartooning icon (on until March 7, 2021), a photographic exhibit focusing on Robert Walker’s photographs of the changing face of Griffintown (on until Feb. 14, 2021) as well as an exhibition of Jean-Claude Poitras’s fashion career, spanning the 1970s to the 2000s (on until Aug. 2).

690 Sherbrooke W., $14–$19, free for Indigenous Peoples, children and museum members. See more details about the McCord Museum here.

For more about Montreal museums and galleries as well as performing arts, please visit the Arts section.