The musts according to Michel Hellman
Michel Hellman

close PHOTO CREDIT : Mélisande Simard


Comic Strip Writers in Residence at Bibliothèque du Mile End.

International Festival of Films on Art

From March 19 to March 22, 2015

Presented in Montreal from March 19 to 22, this festival is my spring must, and year after year I am always impressed by the wealth of its programming. There is really something for everyone, including a vast number of activities, talks and special events in addition to the screenings. It’s a chance to get off the beaten path and make some fine discoveries about a wide variety of forms of artistic expression comprising dance, architecture, photography, theatre, fashion, literature and lots more. This is really an opportunity not to be missed by anyone who is always curious to find out more about artistic creation and creators working in all areas, by means of films that are also selected for the quality of their production. A twofold pleasure…


The Canadian Centre for Architecture

1920, rue Baile

The CCA’s program may sometimes appear to be too dense or too specialized, and therefore off-putting to visitors who don’t regard themselves as being among “the uninitiated.” It’s too bad because, in addition to presenting original and accessible exhibitions, the Museum offers lectures and screenings that are open to the general public and family activities related to architecture. Furthermore, the Centre is in a magnificent building, successfully combing the Shaughnessy house, which was built in 1874, with the new structure, built in 1979. There is also a very well-stocked bookstore open to amateurs and professionals alike, with publications on urban planning, architecture, gardens, photography and design. The CCA is the place to go for a better understanding of what makes a city and how it reflects the contemporary world.

Rooms You May Have Missed: Bijoy Jain, Umberto Riva, installation view, 2014.
© CCA, Montréal


It is still a bit far off, since Expozine will not take place until November, but this is an event that I really enjoy. It is THE underground fair par excellence! In just a few years,  Expozine has become the largest fair for comic books and independent publishers in Canada. There are self-published books, comics, fanzines, silkscreen posters and discs, a real treat for anyone who is interested in Montreal’s avant-garde culture. The tables are very affordable for exhibitors (who prepare for this event months ahead of time!), so there is lots of diversity on offer.  In fact there were close to 300 exhibitors last year. This event is also a chance to talk with artists and publishers in a relaxed setting. It’s a real gold mine for those who like the genre, but also for those who are just curious – which explains the growing success of this event, being held for the 13th time this fall. And then there’s also the pleasure of providing one’s support for alternative creation, which boldly thrives outside the usual boundaries.

Photo: Louis Rastelli.

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