Client: City of Montreal’s Bureau du design and Rivière-des-Prairies-Pointe-aux-Trembles borough
Location: Montreal, QC, Canada
Completion date: 2020
Conception, Production Management
Groupe Information Travail
“Jardin des espoirs” (Garden of Hope) Winter Station is made up of artistic installations that have revitalized a vacant public space in a Montreal neighbourhood.
In 2020, the City of Montreal’s Bureau du design launched a request for proposals for the “Rethinking Public Space” qualification, with the ultimate goal of designing and building “winter stations” in 17 Montreal boroughs.
MASSIVart, Aedifica, Körnelius and the Groupe Information Travail’s woodworking workshop collaborated to design the “Jardin des espoirs” winter station on the Village-de-la-Pointe-aux-Trembles plaza.
Illuminated and decorated with multiform structures reminiscent of the colours of cargo ship containers sailing the Saint-Laurent River, the installation aimed to brighten up local’s daily lives and create a moment of poetry in the urban context.
The urban promenade was enhanced with creative placemaking, through different installations, including:
– Tree illumination for the entire alley
– Two immersive arch installations of 213x94ft with patterns of tree swallows, a distinct species of the area
– Two participative arch installations of 98x85ft with ribbons to be picked up from nearby stores and attached
– Branded flag and string light garland
The project aimed to improve the wellbeing of citizens, promote local commerce and embellish the neighbourhood with art and creativity while providing a safe experience adapted to the pandemic context.
Two important objectives in these uncertain times have been fulfilled thanks to this public art project: to bring joy back to people and encourage the local economy.
The installation also had to be capable of withstanding the harsh Montreal winter, from December 2020 to April 2021.
The “Jardin des espoirs” Winter Station was a sustainable project with a social and economic impact:
- From a social and professional integration course, four apprentice cabinet makers took part in the construction of the winter station. This collaboration allowed the highly motivated participants to carry out this project for the well-being of their community.
- The project made use of local recycled wood (ash trees) and environmentally responsible finishing products.
- The winter station aimed to promote local businesses. To this end, passers-by were invited to collect ribbons from nearby stores so that they could be attached to the installations.
- Due to the project's great success, the installations were moved to another borough of the city of Montreal for the summer season.