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Art Public

Ville de Montréal

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Pierre Bourgault

Le village imaginé. «Le renard l'emporte, le suit à la trace…»

Presentation of the artwork
Situated in Parc Marguerite-Bourgeoys, Le Village imaginé – Ayarak Le Renard l’emporte, le suit à la trace is composed of five elements set in various parts of the park. The string knot, whose overlapping fluid curves are reminiscent of drawing, is made of aluminum. Its form evokes an Ayarak, an Inuit string game. This piece is the central element of the artwork; around it are placed four houses made of weathering (Corten) steel, the surface of which oxidizes and turns orange. The houses, each unique in shape, are set at regular intervals in the park. Their polygonal or irregular shapes, massive and heavy, present a strong contrast with the light, airy string sculpture. A dialogue is established between the materials and between the shapes. Installed in the centre of the park, the knot is a metaphor for the village, whereas the houses reflect the cultural diversity of the neighbourhood. Through the theme of habitat, which recurs in Bourgault’s work, the artwork evokes the colony’s difficult early days.
Associated events
Rooted in the history and spirit of the site, the artwork celebrates the 350th anniversary of Marguerite Bourgeoys’s arrival in Montréal and La Grande Recrue, a vast campaign to recruit settlers organized in 1653.
Pierre Bourgault
Born into a large family of sculptors in Saint-Jean-Port-Joli in the Lower St. Lawrence region, Pierre Bourgault still lives in his hometown. He is an artist, teacher, storyteller, researcher, and navigator. In 1967, he founded the sculpture school in Saint-Jean-Port-Joli. Since the 1970s, he has created numerous habitable works of public art influenced by the river and horizontality, and he has had works in a large number of exhibitions in Canada and abroad. In 1996, he earned a master’s degree in visual arts from Université Laval, in Québec City.
Awards and honours
  • Prix de la Culture Monique Miville Deschênes, municipalité de St-Jean-Port-Joli, 2001
  • 2e prix Pauline Julien, Syndicat canadien des métallos, 1989
  • Concours artistique de la province, Québec, 1970
  • Concours artistique de la province, Québec, 1969
  • Prix Paul-Émile Borduas, 2020
  • Prix du Gouverneur Général , 2022
Fine Arts
Collection name
Public art
Date completed
Mode of acquisition
Public commission from the Ville de Montréal
Assembled; welded
Aluminum, manganese and chrome plating (cat’s-cradle); weathered or Corten steel (houses)
General dimensions
Ensemble de l'œuvre : 98 x 115 m
  • Jean-Julien Bourgault inc.
Le village imaginé. «Le renard l'emporte, le suit à la trace…»
Le Sud-Ouest
Parc Marguerite-Bourgeoys