2009 at the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec

During a press conference, yesterday morning at the Musée national des beaux arts du Quebec, its newly appointer director Esther Trépanier presented the most interesting 2009 program of exhibitions most of which will surely enrich the public's understanding of modernism. Indeed, considered individually or as a whole, these exhibitions will bring valuable elements helping to measure the impact of the modernist movements on the arts but more generally on the social organization and the daily life of societies in the western world during the twentieth century. By saying "he is the master of us all" Pablo Picasso, one of the most prominent modernist artists, justifies the presence in this years program of major works, some never seen this side of the Atlantic, by the atypical academic painter Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. His influence on 20th century artists will be demonstrated. A selection of works from major US artists of the early 20th century will show how modernism reached the American continent and how art moved from Americanism to works with a more universal significance. Women artists making a place for themselves in Canada's artistic circles is also a manifestation of 20th century modernism in our society and so is the treatment of the nude, a subject matter often eclipsed by our art historians and curators. Scheduled for this year is what will be seen as the most comprehensive exhibition of nudes by modern Canadian artists, a show that will follow the presentation of a selection of works by women artists in the Musée's collection. Men, women, love, sensuality, sexuality, modern topics dealt with by contemporary artists in photography, video, installation modern medias; works that will sweep us off our feet. This is what suggests the title of this exhibition scheduled for fall Last but not least, a bit of history: the Capture of Quebec and a well deserved tribute paid to local artists Charles Daudelin and Micheline Beauchemin whose work in public places we often passed by and sadly overlook, complete the program that proves, once again, the Musée dedication to the artistic education of the community and its aesthetic pleasure.