A new exhibition - Montréal and Fashion: So Many Years, So Much to Show -
Place Ville Marie presents a vibrant tribute to the fashion industry

MONTREAL, June 17 /CNW Telbec/ - Place Ville Marie put on all its finery for the exhibition Montréal and Fashion: So Many Years, So Much to Show, a celebration and retrospective of the Montréal fashion industry and its artisans from the 1850s to the present day. Place Ville Marie hosted today a special event to mark the official opening of the exhibition in the presence of a few of Quebec's top fashion designers, including namely Marie Saint Pierre, Jean-Claude Poitras, Yves Jean Lacasse, Michel Desjardins and Michel Vaudrin. The guest of honor for this special event was Jacques De Montjoye, founder of the first Canadian Association of Couturiers in 1954 and one of the pioneers of the fashion industry.

The exhibition chronicles the development of the fashion industry through the rich history of Montréal's garment manufacturers, retailers and designers, as well as its educational institutions, models, photographers and more! Vintage collections, photos, videos and artifacts bring to life the Québec fashion scene through the decades, to the delight of shoppers, passersby and the approximately 10,000 people who work in the Place Ville Marie complex.

"From its very opening in 1962, the Galerie Place Ville Marie has held a most special place in the heart of anyone interested in - or impassioned by - fashion," says Dany Gauthier, Place Ville Marie's Senior Property Manager. "Over the years, Place Ville Marie has become the meeting spot, the place where you can experience the pulse of downtown Montréal. On the eve of our 50th anniversary, it was natural to want to trace the highlights of previous decades and to highlight the work of those who have helped the Québec fashion industry grow and attain the prominence it enjoys abroad today."

Co-produced by Place Ville Marie and Bleublancrouge, this exhibition was largely inspired by the work of anthropologist Gérald Baril, author of Dicomode. Le dictionnaire de la mode au Québec de 1900 à nos jours. "Fashion has always fascinated me. Tracing its development over time affords a window into social movements," Mr. Baril says. "This new exhibition at Place Ville Marie vividly illustrates the longstanding love affair between Québec - and Montréal in particular - and fashion."


Inspired by Parisian haute couture but firmly rooted in North America, nourished by the influences of immigrants from around the globe, Québec fashion forged a distinct personality throughout the 20th century. In Montréal and Fashion: So Many Years, So Much to Show, fashion is presented as a cultural and economic phenomenon occurring within a specific historical framework.

From fur fashions to children's wear, in recent decades Montréal has established itself as a major garment manufacturing hub. The exhibition looks at this, but also explores the era of the big department stores that shaped the face of Sainte-Catherine Street, as well as the first fashion designers, pattern shops, success stories like Browns, Le Château and Reitmans, and Montréal institutions like Ogilvy and Dupuis Frères, to name but a few.

Québec designers have long enjoyed considerable popularity among local shoppers. However, from New York City to Milan, and in Paris and London, our creators have also made their mark on the international stage, propelling Québec styles well beyond its borders.

In sum, Montréal and Fashion: So Many Years, So Much to Show is a fascinating look at the personalities, businesses, institutions, trademarks, associations and collections that constitute the Québec fashion industry. Each segment presents its share of anecdotes, historical facts and statistics in an informative, entertaining and innovative manner. From Michel Robichaud to Andy The-Ahn, by way of Jean-Claude Poitras and Marie Saint Pierre, this exhibition is a must for fashionistas of every stripe!


As its designers envisioned back in 1962, Place Ville Marie today is a "city within a city." Home to major Canadian and international firms, it is the heart of Montréal's business district. More than ever today, the Place Ville Marie shopping mall remains at the forefront of major trends, housing more than 80 restaurants and upscale boutiques offering an extensive range of ready-to-wear collections, accessories and high-end products as well as impeccable service.

    From June 10 to October 29 - free admission

    Monday to Wednesday: 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    Thursday and Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
    Saturday: 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Sunday: noon to 5 p.m.


Photos and interviews available on request

SOURCE Place Ville Marie

For further information: For further information: Josée Massicotte, 514 388-0169, massicottejosee@videotron.ca

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