“Interior”: whether as noun or adjective, the word defines a space contained within limits, within boundaries. It carries numerous meanings and nuances in its applications in home life, imprisonment, feminism, the spiritual dimension, politics and other areas.
A selection of artworks that invite us into a collective dream.
The exhibition Views of Within: Picturing the Spaces We Inhabit brings together works from the Museum’s collection that, each in their own way, present one or several evocations of interior space. Artists from a range of backgrounds – Raymonde April, Chris Cran, Pierre Dorion, Oreka James, Christine Major, Caroline Monnet and Natalie Reis, among others – open the doors to show us different ways it is inhabited and navigated. Depicting the interior as a domestic space, a place for creation, for reflection, for privacy, for healing, these works can be interpreted in many ways and draw us into a collective dream.
New perspectives on interior spaces
The pandemic has transformed our perception of the interior. Whereas formerly we spoke of cocooning as a voluntary choice to stay at home, now we speak of isolation and confinement when faced with what has become an obligation. The interior reveals problems that its boundaries used to conceal, including domestic violence. The requirement to remain at home has underscored concerns about homelessness and housing issues as well. It also highlights the devastating effect of the colonial vision of the “ideal” number of people living under one roof: even today, a disproportionate number of Indigenous children are placed in foster care. How can the interior be defined in these particular cases?
Views of Within: Picturing the Spaces We Inhabit seeks to highlight how interior space can be found in as many forms, obvious or understated, as there are different individuals or situations.
Credits and curatorial team
An exhibition organized by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.
Curator: eunice bélidor
With support from
Pierre Dorion (born in 1959), Untitled, 1999, oil on canvas, 112 x 56 cm. MMFA, purchase, Hugh G. Jones Fund. Photo MMFA, Christine Guest