AN INNOVATIVE AUDIOGUIDE ON QUEBEC AND CANADIAN ART PROVIDED FREE OF CHARGE

 

To enable visitors to fully appreciate the works on display in the new Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion of Quebec and Canadian Art, an audioguide has been produced with generous funding from Hydro‐Québec that allows the Museum to offer it free of charge.

 

The recording provides three kinds of information. Commentaries on the artworks are followed by interviews with the artists and pieces of music selected from the archives of CBC/Radio‐Canada. The broadcaster worked closely with the MMFA on the creation of this audioguide, and well-known personalities agreed to lend their voices for the recording (Paul Kennedy and Jeanette Kelly for the English version, and Catherine Perrin, Michel Desautels and Pascale Nadeau for the French).

 

Visitors are invited to take the time to listen to the pieces of music to immerse themselves in sounds evoking the various periods of the history of Quebec and Canadian art. The tour follows a chronological order, pausing to consider seventy‐five works. Visitors are sure to be fascinated by Marcelle Ferron's thoughts on Surrealism, Automatisme and space, and amused by Robert Roussil's account of the day the police arrested his sculpture The Family. By listening to the comments of artists like Riopelle, Molinari and others, visitors learn more about painting and art.

 

Here are a few examples:

"I've always been rather interested in horses. I did the painting Church and Horse a few months after the assassination of President Kennedy. It's curious to know how one's mind gets filled with images, but I recall watching the funeral – as I suppose many people did – with great interest, and being impressed by the black riderless horse. And I suppose that this has some kind of crazy connection with my having done the painting."

– Alex Colville, CBC archival recording, 1967

 

"What you are looking for in a painting is what I am looking for, too. Drawing, painting, by their very definition, are the search for an ideal."

— Paul-Émile Borduas, Radio‐Canada archival recording, 1950

 

The Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion comprises six levels displaying over 600 artworks arranged in chronological order from the top floor downwards. The numbering of the audioguide stops on the audioguide follows the same order. The audioguide stops are identified by three symbols: headphones for the commentaries, a microphone for the interviews from the archives and a note of music for the musical excerpts.