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Art Public

Ville de Montréal

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Pierre Heyvaert


Presentation of the artwork
The artwork is presented in the pool west of the Casino de Montréal (formerly the Québec pavilion) in Parc Jean-Drapeau, on Île Notre-Dame. The three concrete pillars that support the steel sculpture are submerged, giving the impression that it is floating on the surface of the water.

The abstract sculpture is made of triangular steel plates welded together at their edges. Assembled, they form different geometric figures articulated around three arch-shaped volumes. The artist took inspiration for the artwork from the theme of the Québec pavilion, “Challenge, Combat, Momentum.”

This sculpture is particularly representative of the late 1960s, when sculptural research was turning toward abstraction and there was a marked interest in geometry and the articulation of forms through an interplay of planes set at different angles. Acier was Heyvaert’s first work executed in metal.
Associated events
The sculpture was commissioned by the government of Québec for its pavilion at the Montréal World Fair in 1967. When the call for bids was issued, eight sculptors were asked make submissions: Pierre Heyvaert, Ulysse Comtois, Paul Borduas, Jacques Huet, Jean-Paul Mousseau, Robert Roussil, Yves Trudeau, and Armand Vaillancourt.
Pierre Heyvaert
In 1957, after graduating from the School of Industrial and Decorative Arts in Ixelles, Belgium, Pierre Heyvaert moved to Canada. Over the following decade he took part in the International Sculpture Symposium in Montréal (1964); Forma Viva, the International Sculpture Symposium in Kostanjevica, Yugoslavia (1965); and the Symposium international de sculpture sur bois in Québec City (1966). In 1970, he had a solo exhibition, Espace triangulaire, at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal. His artworks are in the collections of the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, the Montréal Museum of Fine Art, and the National Gallery of Canada.
Awards and honours
  • bourse du Conseil des Arts du Canada, 1971
  • bourse du Ministère des Affaires Culturelles du Québec, 1969
Variation of title
Sous l'eau
Fine Arts
Collection name
Public art
Date completed
Mode of acquisition
Welded; cast
Steel; concrete
General dimensions
385 x 700 x 350cm
Parc Jean-Drapeau, Île Notre-Dame