Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Montreal Art Center Attracts Cultural Clout to Thriving Griffintown District

One of downtown Montreal's last frontiers is "Griffintown".

Nestled along the north side of Lachine Canal between the Old Port, Old Montreal and Little Burgundy, At one time this area was the industrial heartland of an entire country. Where there used to be barges lined up waiting to go through the Lachine Canal locks loaded with chain and grain, now you are most likely to find aspiring actors and actresses lined up hoping to get on as an extra with one of the area's film studios or shoots.

One of the latest arrivals into this storied scenario is the Montreal Art Center. Located in a former engine works, the Montreal Art Center is already home to approximately 30 artists and will be adding more in the coming months up to a maximum of about 100 once the second stage is completed next year. The artists work in open concept studios and all have the opportunity to hang their work in their own spaces and in the main gallery. The Montreal Art Center is a private venture that neatly complements the condo developments and general atmosphere of the area, which also includes the Notre Dame St. antique dealers, the Lachine Canal National Park and cycle path. Also quite nearby are cultural features such as the Parisian Laundry art gallery and the reborn New City Gas complex, home to such events as C2-MTL, a "creative commerce" conference planned for May, 2012, in the structure, originally built in the 19th Century to provide light for the streets of Montreal.

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