John and Yoko's Imagine: Imagine all the beatnik people
Let's fess up, people: Montreal gets a kick out of patting itself on the back.
Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the art of self-loving, especially when looking back on the pivotal role our city played in hatching the most widely sung anti-war anthem ever, Give Peace a Chance.
It's just that, when you pore over the details, we weren't John and Yoko's first pick. In truth, not even their second.
The newlyweds ultimately settled on Montreal and the Queen Elizabeth, no less for their 1969 Vietnam-induced Bed-In for Peace after deeming the Bahamas too scorching and being denied U.S. entry (it's no secret the ex-Beatle loved his reefer).
Nevertheless, the multidisciplinary exhibit Imagine takes a ride down musical memory lane and gives greater context to those infamous bedroom shenanigans.
Developed in collaboration with the Fluxus-inclined Yoko herself, Imagine retraces the couple's unique artistic and political partnership, highlighting some of their entourage's cornerstone creations Yoko's Wish Tree, John's famous Bag One lithographs and some of Bob Gruen's Nutopia prints among them.
Bringing together some 140 key works and documents, the exhibit gives renewed relevance to the boho duo's pacifist mobilizations.
And in true nonconformist spirit, admission is free for all, flower children or not.
Imagine: The Peace Ballad of John and Yoko
April 2 to June 21
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
1379 Sherbrooke E.