My Montreal Bucketlist: Visiting the DHC/ART Gallery and Phi Centre

Interiors Series. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve Interiors Series. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

Montreal is blessed with its endless access and display of art. Every street corner there is art. Whether it be a gallery, a piece of street art, an indoor or outdoor exhibition, a performer or some other kind of artistic inspiration. So in an attempt to discover even more of Montreal’s cultural and artistic scene, I decided to venture to see some of the smaller galleries in the city.

Located in Montreal’s Old Port, DHC/ART and the Phi Centre are art centres that offer a range of different contemporary art exhibitions. In association with one another, they are currently show casing two exhibitions throughout the three buildings (because DHC/ART is in two locations).

Untitled, 2007. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

Untitled, 2007. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

DHC/ART is a not-for-profit organisation established in 2007. Dedicated to the presentation of contemporary art, the galleries offer two to three exhibitions and a series of events annually. Free for all to enjoy, the gallery focuses on international works while maintaining a strong contextual tie to Montreal. It hopes to create connection between our every day lives and the greater topics of the world.

The Phi Centre is an artistic space where local and international artists have a chance to create, develop and display their works. Also a venue that hosts many different artistic events and exhibitions, there is always something to be seen, learnt and admired at the Phi Centre.

Untitled, 2003. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

Untitled, 2003. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

Currently on show are two very different but equally as interesting exhibitions. Valérie Belin, Surface Tension, is a photography exhibition exploring the greater relationships and contextual tensions between objects and their meaning. Belin, intrigued by the philosophy of how a photograph can evoke meaning and energy, investigates this through the notion of materiality with the intention of stripping away the contextual influences. An interesting exhibition, and certainly thought provoking!

Amazon Lily (left) and Pieris Japonica. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

Amazon Lily (left) and Pieris Japonica. Valerie Belin. Photo by Annie Shreeve

Second on show is a combination of photography and film about the constant battles and war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. By Richard Mosse, the exhibition is called The Enclave. An intense photography and filmography display of Mosse’s work from various trips between 2010 and 2013, he used special infrared film which converts all the green tones to wonderfully vibrant pinks and reds. This intention is to soften the notion of “war”. A six panel video instillation allows viewers to become incased in the horrific sights of the war and bring us into contact with it. It is a “Contemplative and reflective medium of the photograph and the emotional impact of the moving image,” Curator Cheryl Sim said.

The Enclave. Richard Mosse. Photo by Annie Shreeve

The Enclave. Richard Mosse. Photo by Annie Shreeve

The Enclave. Richard Mosse. Photo by Annie Shreeve

The Enclave. Richard Mosse. Photo by Annie Shreeve

An interesting place to visit, and each of these exhibitions is showing until February 8, 2015.

DHC/ART is located at 451 and 465 Saint-Jean street. Opening hours are Wednesday to Friday 12 to 7 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Phi Centre is located at 407 Saint-Pierre street. Opening hours are Monday, Tuesday 12 to 6 p.m., Wednesday to Friday 12 to 7 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Entrance is free to both galleries.

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