Let’s go outside: An art scavenger hunt in the Village

This article was updated on June 27, 2019.

The main street of Montréal’s Gay Village is a manifestation of public art. The annual project, entitled Aires Libres, is a selection of installations that tease the senses and challenge perception. This is the 12th edition of the annual project, but it’s the final year for one of the main attractions. Here’s what to look for on your Village art scavenger hunt.

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So many balls

The balls of the Montréal Village have become iconic. (Yes, snicker if you wish.) Designed by internationally-renowned landscape architect Claude Cormier, the annual urban canopy has traditionally been a single colour that denotes queerness and nonconformity: pink. The installation has evolved, however, into an 18-tone sequence that references the rainbow flag. The balls span the entire length of the pedestrian zone, comprising of more than 180,000 resin balls. Truly a sight to behold.

This is the final year that the installation will be present. So now is the moment to see it!

Galerie blanc

Galerie blanc is an outdoor gallery that allows pedestrians to access art — day or night, rain or shine, 365 days a year. The objective is to facilitate a merge between creativity and the public, making art accessible for everyone while simultaneously encouraging contemplation. The main gallery is located at the corner of Sainte-Catherine Street East and Wolfe Street. This year Galerie Blanc has partnered with Festival Chromatic and TOILETPAPER magazine to investigate the current phenomenon of hyper consumption of images. The images are colourful, playful, and often ironic.

Building bridges

Entitled “FunambOule”, the suspension bridge is the perfect angle to nab a selfie or gain an Instagram-worthy perspective on those previously mentioned iconic balls. Be forewarned: the height might induce a bit of vertigo. Or perhaps that’s just the sensation of falling in love with Montréal. You choose.

The mural of the story

If larger-than-life paintings are your thing, don’t miss the mural by Cécile Gariépy. An illustrator based in Montréal, Gariepy loves images that tell stories. Her work is playful and puts emphasis on colour, composition and character design. You’ll find her work at 1320 Wolfe Street.

Daniel Baylis

Daniel Baylis, blogger

Daniel Baylis is a writer and adventurer. Born in British Columbia, Daniel came to Montréal with the kooky bohemian notion that he would write poetry, learn to speak French and fall in love. Having achieved various levels of success in said domains, he now focuses his energy on a new hobby: artisanal pickling.

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