Montréal, January 4, 2019 – After reaching record attendance rates in 2017 during the celebrations of its 25th anniversary and Montréal’s 375th anniversary, Pointe-à-Callière hit a new peak in 2018 by attracting 527,216 visitors, a 14% increase compared to the previous year. This remarkable rise in attendance attests to the great interest generated by the new historical sites bequeathed to Montrealers, Quebecers and Canadians, namely the Fort Ville-Marie-Quebecor Pavilion and the Memory Collector, the sound and light experience presented in North America’s first collector sewer.
The popularity of the temporary exhibition Queens of Egypt presented during peak season also greatly contributed to the success of 2018. This exceptional exhibition, which combined an original theme, high quality objects shown for the first time in North America and extraordinary museography—thanks in part to a creative collaboration with partner Ubisoft Montréal—attracted no fewer than 316,000 visitors, making it Pointe-à-Callière’s most popular temporary show.
“Whether by its heritage legacy or its temporary exhibitions, Pointe-à-Callière uses the talent and creativity of its team to make accessible Montréal’s founding site and objects significant to the heritage of humanity. This Montréal museum constantly renews itself to inspire Montrealers to rediscover the history of their city and to live diversified experiences,” explains Francine Lelièvre, Executive Director of Pointe-à-Callière. “The year 2019 will offer original new exhibitions as well as the renewal of the Generations MTL multimedia show. It’s the perfect opportunity to become a member of the Museum,” she adds.
Laughter, curiosities and gastronomy at Pointe-à-Callière in 2019
In addition to the La Petite Vie event, which runs until April and invites visitors to immerse themselves in the outrageous atmosphere of this cult TV series, Pointe-à-Callière will be presenting memorable temporary exhibitions in 2019.
Starting on February 13, Cabinet of Wonders will introduce visitors to the strange and fascinating world of curiosity cabinets. A tribute to the beauty and strangeness of the world, this exhibition will present over 1,000 magnificent—often exotic and sometimes unusual—objects from around the globe, all of which are the joy of collectors. Installations teem with butterflies and mounted animals, remnants of distant cultures, scientific instruments and an array of objects from Montréal and Quebec collectors that will amaze and fascinate young and old.
From May 15 to October 13, Pointe-à-Callière promises to whet the appetites of visitors with the exhibition Dinner is served! The story of French cuisine. This exhibition will pay tribute to the gastronomic meal of the French, now recognized as UNESCO cultural heritage of humanity. It will shed light on the myriad dimensions of French cuisine, from Gallo-Roman times to the present day, as it evolved with the arrival of new products and ingredients from Asia and America. Featuring over 1,200 historical collectibles from several museums and major French houses, prestigious museography will highlight the role played by the French meal in the development of culinary arts. The exhibition will also explore how the French meal served French diplomacy around the world, as well as the political, economic and social issues related to it. Above all, it will celebrate this social and convivial act, so rich in traditions and know-how, which helped shape France’s cultural identity.
In the spring of 2019, the Museum will present a brand-new multimedia show projected on an incredible immersive stage installation. Generations MTL will retrace the history of the city through the stories of various characters speaking about their Montréal and show the city’s evolution before one’s very eyes thanks to projections of archaeological remains.
Moreover, the completely revisited Building Montréal exhibition will provide an innovative and hands-on experience by means of artificial intelligence. Visitors will step back in time to discover the market square in 1749 and chat with historical figures about their daily lives or the great moments of the time. Interactive genealogy terminals will reveal one’s first ancestors to set foot in Montréal and a new timeline will illustrate the important moments in Montréal’s evolution.
**A host of upcoming activities for young and old **
In addition to its large-scale exhibitions, Pointe-à-Callière will once again offer various cultural activities for families or adults in 2019. In March, little ones can participate in free outdoor activities celebrating the sugaring off season and La Petite Vie during Spring Break. On March 2, as part of MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, the older crowd will be invited to revel late into the night during the “Folle nuit blanche chez les Paré” and to dress up as their favourite character in the photo booth.
In the summer, Place D’Youville and Place Royale will come alive with the opening of Urban Space, the return of Musical Middays featuring up-and-coming Montréal performers, Family Sundays and, at the end of August, the historical reenactment of the famous public market in the 18th century.
About Pointe-à-Callière, Montréal Archaeology and History Complex
Located on the site where Montréal was founded, Pointe-à-Callière is the largest history museum in Montréal. Rising above a number of national historic and archaeologic sites, the Museum’s mission is to raise awareness and foster an appreciation of the city’s history and to forge bonds with regional, national and international networks.
Pointe-à-Callière is subsidized by the City of Montréal.
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Visuals of Pointe-à-Callière or exhibitions are available upon request.