Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec
This summer, discover in Canadian exclusivity, Picasso Figures. The exhibition will feature paintings and drawings never before presented in Québec of one of the 20th century’s most important, prolific artists. For several decades, but even more strongly in recent years, voices have been raised to question an art history built around the great male figures, sometimes openly misogynistic, that museums have helped to tell.
Picasso is certainly the most famous artist of the 20th century; he is praised for his art. However, his biographers also tell of his reprehensible behavior towards women. Should the artist's life be separated from his work? This is an ethical and philosophical question to which Picasso himself has provided some answers. In an era of cultural boycotts, we choose to recognize one of the greatest contributions to recent art history with this exhibition. However, it was important that the presentation of this exhibition be anchored in our reality and that it be able to nourish reflections related to current issues.
Bringing together a selection of masterpieces from the collection of the Musée national Picasso-Paris, Picasso. Figures is a thematic proposal that offers a journey through more than seventy-five years of artistic production, inhabited by the human body. A true favorite motif of Picasso's, this theme is one of the most fertile prisms for addressing the multiple metamorphoses at work in the artist's practice. Shaped by Picasso, the deconstructed, reconstructed and constantly transformed body is transformed into plastic figures in the trajectory of the man who is considered an extraordinary genius.
At the same time, we juxtapose Picasso's work with certain current social concerns. His insubordination to the dictates of aesthetic canons inspired us to reflect on body diversity. Accompanied by Mickaël Bergeron, journalist and author, Cassandra Cacheiro and Sara Hini, founders of The Womanhood Project, as well as Elizabeth Cordeau Rancourt, creator of cultural content, we invite you to relate Picasso's work to those of a few contemporary artists, mainly from Quebec, whose work explores this question.
Upon exiting the exhibition Picasso. Figures, you will enter the concurrent exhibition Opening A Dialogue About Body Liberation, a group exhibition designed as an invitation to see beyond physical ideals.
The Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec:
400 Years in the History of Québec Art and an architectural experience spanning the generations, from the 17th century to the present, across 4 pavilions.
Proud of its reference collection of Québec art, the Musée abundant collection of more than 40,000 works offers a vast survey of the history of Québec art from the seventeenth century to today.
Located in Québec City, a world heritage city, the MNBAQ has four pavilions: the Pierre Lassonde pavilion, devoted to contemporary art, the Charles Baillairgé pavilion (the former Québec City jail), devoted to modern art, the Gérard Morisset pavilion, the temple of historical art, and the central pavilion, home to the Family Gallery.
The nerve centre of the Arts District, the Musée is particularly active in the community. From one season to the next it swings in step with Québec City’s great cultural events, spreading beyond its walls with Shining a Light on Art, a walking tour of giant street lights on Cartier Avenue, and exhibiting vibrant works by Québec artists from its vast collection.
An Exceptional Building
Discover the MNBAQ’s new Pierre Lassonde pavilion, a world-class building with its majestic glass lobby, monumental spiral staircase, cantilevered staircase in the treetops and inner courtyard which blends architectural heritage with the contemporary. Visit the eight exhibition galleries, where contemporary Québec art since 1960 is on display, including Inuit art, the decorative arts and design.
Sculpted ceilings, columns topped with capitals and noble materials: the neo-classical architecture of the Charles Baillairgé pavilion is an impressive sight! Discover five new exhibition rooms devoted to ancient and modern art.Visitors can follow the careers of the women and men who have made Québec what it is today, from copyists to the Automatists, from the beginnings of the market to the explosion of artistic trends. This major event will encompass over than 600 works and offer a bold synthesis of the history of visual culture, from New France to the counterculture of the 1960s.
The Charles Baillairgé pavilion – which served as the Québec City jail for nearly a century – will fascinate with its jail cells, some of which have been preserved. Four galleries devoted to the figures of modern Québec art display masterpieces by Jean Paul Lemieux, Alfred Pellan, Fernand Leduc and Jean-Paul Riopelle.
A Museum for Young and Grown-ups Alike - The Family Gallery
The Musée is the place to go for family discovery activities. A welcoming, interactive new space lets children explore the world of art in a different way by stimulating all their senses. Being able to observe, touch, listen and play: that’s what awaits you at the Family Gallery! An original world designed for children, accessible free of charge at all times.
Discover our Cultural Activities
For those looking for stimulating knowledge and cultural experiences, the Musée offers a wide range of activities. From guided tours (at fixed times and free with admission) to lectures by specialists by way of master classes, encounters with creators, public readings and multidisciplinary live events, the MNBAQ celebrates creation in many different ways! All the more reason to visit more often, again and again.