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Charters De Almeida

La ville imaginaire

1997
Presentation of the artwork
Myth is the main theme of this 19-metre-high granite sculpture. The artwork addresses these foundational stories of cultures as timeless accounts, signs of a humanity that escapes the linearity of time.

Here, the artist is concerned with the symbolism of the door and the passage as poetic figures of interstice, future, and resignation. In continuity with de Almeida’s artistic approach, La Ville imaginaire is a frame that oscillates “between the desire for continuity and the need for rupture.”

Its site in Parc Jean-Drapeau offers a peaceful environment appropriate for experiencing the artwork. The sculpture invites the viewer to discover doors and passageways that, as the artist notes, “are the response to the conscious or subconscious imagining of a universe.” Set apart from the weight of time and space, the sculpture invites contemplation and reflection in a space on the edge of the real city.
Associated events
The artwork was offered to the Société de transport de Montréal by the Metropolitano de Lisboa, and the STM donated it to the Ville de Montréal. The donation underlines the large size and the dynamism of the Portuguese community in Montréal as well as the 30th anniversary of the 1967 Montreal World Fair.
Charters De Almeida
Born in Lisbon in 1935, João Charters de Almeida lives and works in Portugal. He completed his studies at the Escola Superior de Belas-Artes in Porto, became a professor, then decided to devote himself exclusively to his art practice.

His work is included in numerous collections, including those of the British Museum, the Sao Paolo Museum of Contemporary Art, and the National Museum of Contemporary Art in Lisbon. He is also well represented in the public space through large-scale projects in Macau (1993) and Lisbon (2000), among other locations.
Awards and honours
  • Doctorat honorifique en architecture, Universidade Lusiada de Lisboa, 2011
  • Officier de l'ordre de Léopold du Royaume de Belgique, 1992
  • Comendador da Ordem do Infante D. Henrique, Portugal, 1988
  • Chevalier de l'ordre des Arts et Lettres, Ministère de la culture, France, 1988
Presentation of the artwork
Myth is the main theme of this 19-metre-high granite sculpture. The artwork addresses these foundational stories of cultures as timeless accounts, signs of a humanity that escapes the linearity of time.

Here, the artist is concerned with the symbolism of the door and the passage as poetic figures of interstice, future, and resignation. In continuity with de Almeida’s artistic approach, La Ville imaginaire is a frame that oscillates “between the desire for continuity and the need for rupture.”

Its site in Parc Jean-Drapeau offers a peaceful environment appropriate for experiencing the artwork. The sculpture invites the viewer to discover doors and passageways that, as the artist notes, “are the response to the conscious or subconscious imagining of a universe.” Set apart from the weight of time and space, the sculpture invites contemplation and reflection in a space on the edge of the real city.
Associated events
The artwork was offered to the Société de transport de Montréal by the Metropolitano de Lisboa, and the STM donated it to the Ville de Montréal. The donation underlines the large size and the dynamism of the Portuguese community in Montréal as well as the 30th anniversary of the 1967 Montreal World Fair.
Charters De Almeida
Born in Lisbon in 1935, João Charters de Almeida lives and works in Portugal. He completed his studies at the Escola Superior de Belas-Artes in Porto, became a professor, then decided to devote himself exclusively to his art practice.

His work is included in numerous collections, including those of the British Museum, the Sao Paolo Museum of Contemporary Art, and the National Museum of Contemporary Art in Lisbon. He is also well represented in the public space through large-scale projects in Macau (1993) and Lisbon (2000), among other locations.
Awards and honours
  • Doctorat honorifique en architecture, Universidade Lusiada de Lisboa, 2011
  • Officier de l'ordre de Léopold du Royaume de Belgique, 1992
  • Comendador da Ordem do Infante D. Henrique, Portugal, 1988
  • Chevalier de l'ordre des Arts et Lettres, Ministère de la culture, France, 1988
Detail
Category
Fine Arts
Subcategory
Installation
Collection name
Public art
Date completed
1997
Mode of acquisition:
Donation
Accession date
September 10 1997
Technique(s)
Carved; assembled
Materials
Granite
General dimensions
1900 x 1800 x 2750 cm
Manufacturer
  • Construções aceleradas e obras públicas, S.A.
La ville imaginaire
Borough
Ville-Marie
Park
Parc Jean-Drapeau, Île Sainte-Hélène