18 Jul 2022

Time 5 minutes

Cultural Summer Outings in Old Montreal

Cultural Summer Outings in Old Montreal

Get ready to enjoy immersive works of art, creations that celebrate the culturally diverse and the LGBTQ+ community, activities that teach history about the world and Quebec, new independent bookstores, the unveiling of the new theatrical season, and more… Old Montreal is bursting with cultural escapades all year, but especially so during the summer!

1- New Exhibits at PHI

PHI Foundation, 451 Saint-Jean Street

Our first suggestion is more of an event than just a simple exhibit. For the first time in Quebec, the works by the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama will be accessible to the public… for free! Presented during the 15th anniversary of the PHI Foundation, this exhibit gathers several of the most notable works from one of the most popular contemporary artists in the world. You’ll be able to see paintings, sculptures, immersive displays, and there will be a reading room where you can learn more about this woman who is larger than life. A must-see!

FYI: New tickets are available every 15th of the month at noon. Don’t miss out!

Centre PHI, 315 Saint-Paul Street West

Centre PHI isn’t resting on its hands either: you can visit two new expos that are likely to blow you away! First off, INVERSE by Nicolas Jenkins is an experimental documentary on LGBTQ+ identities that paints a picture of everyday life for the queer communities of New York. Then, in Heaven’s Gate, you will be able to immerse yourself in the tableaux of videographer Marco Brambilla, which are somewhere between Renaissance painting and video game. Get ready for a psychedelic reflection on the seven levels of purgatory!

2 - Busy Summer at Pointe-à-Callière

Pointe-à-Callière, 350 Place Royale

It’s always a good time to discover the immersive exhibit VIKINGS – Dragons of the Northern Seas, comprising 650 items that recount the maritime and warmongering prowess, the mythology, and the trades and leisures of this ancient Scandinavian society between the 8th and 11th centuries, as well as the role women played within it. Treasures will be displayed with spectacular staging, set up in collaboration with Ubisoft Montreal, creator of the video game Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.

And while we’re here, we’ll be enjoying Pointe-à-Callière for its free concerts they hold every Thursday at noon. During Family Sundays, you can enjoy workshops and storytelling in a recreated viking encampment. And in August, you can fill your basket at the 18th century public market, where you can converse with the colourful characters of New France to the sounds of the era!

3- Maktaba, Celebrate Diversity

Maktaba Bookstore, 165 Saint-Paul Street West

Open since last June, boutique bookstore Maktaba, meaning ‘library’ in Arabic, is a cultural space managed by a couple of artists from Iraq. Here, you’ll mostly find works (books, CDs, artisanal goods, clothing, skateboards…) from creators of colour that are sold on a smaller scale. It’s the ideal place to uncover unique objects and settle in to relax, as Sundus and Yassin have arranged a cozy little reading nook. They’ll even offer you some tea! They’re as kind as they come!

4- Your Invitation to the Wishbone Ball

Wishbone Art Gallery, 395 Notre-Dame Street West

For its first collective exhibition, Wishbone Art Gallery presents Cotillion, inspired by the springtime dances of the same name. A rich visual celebration that will ravish lovers of the visual arts all summer long. Among our favourites: the ethereal scenes of Amielle Clouâtre, the golden animal skeletons signed by The Lobo, as well as the Japanese style stories by Christian de Massy. An exceptional selection.

5- Urban Landscapes at LeRoyer

LeRoyer Gallery, 45 Saint-Paul Street West

We need to stop by LeRoyer Gallery for a second to admire the work by Chilean artist Felipe Lavin, which is both fascinating and original. Holder of a diploma from a construction engineering school, this photographer is also passionate about urban landscapes and architecture. The talented creator has made it his mission to change the perception people have about the places they frequent every day. This exhibit shows that building fronts, highways, and the quays of the metropolis are no longer a commonplace bore!

6- Autumn Preparations at the Centaur

Centaur Theatre Company, 453 Saint-François-Xavier Street

Are you chomping at the bit for autumn’s return and the cultural presence it brings? Enjoy a moment of relaxation by the pool or at the park and scroll through the peerless Old Montreal entertainment venue, grabbing some tickets while you do. The 2022-2023 season at Centaur is opening with the theme of “sense of community”, a veritable love letter addressed to the resilient artists and loyal public that has traversed these past couple years of the pandemic. On the docket: a comedy documentary on the linguistic duality of the city, a reflection on sincerity in the era of the #MeToo movement, an autobiography of a gay man in the dawn of his sixties, and the English premier of the play King Dave, which met with resounding critical and popular success last year at Duceppe.

7 - Jump Back into Victorian History: The Sir-George-Étienne-Cartier National Historical Site

Sir-George-Étienne-Cartier National Historical Site, 458 Notre-Dame Street East

The Sir-George-Étienne-Cartier Historical Site reopened this year, which has come as welcome news to our fair city! Between its architecture, interior décor, and various items on display - not to mention, the various anecdotes about social and family life of historical characters told by the guides on site – this is THE place to go if you want to learn more about the “birth of modern Canada and the evolution of its democratic model. This is also an look into the bourgeoisie’s way of life during the 19th century. Power, love, and politics… Discover what was percolating within the Cartier family of the day!” explains the staff at the historical site.

N.B.: Could your business be mentioned here but is not yet included? Don’t hesitate to write us at info@sdcvieuxmontreal.com and we’ll be happy to put it in the list.

Picture: Centre Phi website