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5 hot art exhibits to deliver us from the January deep freeze!

Crédit photo : Juan Ortiz-Apuy, "Realia Series: Quintillizos (Quintuplets)", 2012-13, impression jet d'encre, édition de 5.
5 hot art exhibits to deliver us from the January deep freeze!
Tell me true, my snow angel – are you feeling blue? Did the holidays carve you up like a turkey? Has the cold begun to take its toll? Oh, my poor beleaguered baby. Don’t despair. Your aesthetic salvation is but a few steps (and perhaps, a metro ride) away. You don’t believe me? Oh dear. The winter has hardened you. Well, not to worry – I have the cure for that. Follow me!
To begin, let’s trip off to sunny Greece (by way of the Old Port). At Pointe-à-Callière, Montréal’s marvelous Museum of Archaeology and History, we find The Greeks – Agamemnon to Alexander the Great. The Greeks just happens to be the most extensive and comprehensive exhibition on Ancient Greece ever presented in North America. Amazing, right? Truly, some of the collection's priceless artifacts have never left their native soil before, so it really is a sight to see. (Until April 26)
Courtesy of Pointe-à-Callière
Holding fast to that Hellenic state of mind, we now make our way to Le Centre des arts actuels SKOL where we find The Engine Room. As modern Greece is at the heart of major global change, curator Stéphanie Bertrand has endeavoured to gather the videos, collages and photographs of three contemporary artists from the troubled but resilient country. Expect paradox, look for transformation, see evolution. (From Jan. 10 to Feb. 7)
Untitled, Lena Athanasopoulou, collage, inkjet print on newspaper, variable dimensions, 2010. 
Where to next, you say? Oh goody! I can feel that glacial doubt of yours melting away. Well, why don’t we head down to Griffintown, to Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran. There, we’ll peruse the work of Costa Rica-born artist, Juan Ortiz-Apuy. Ortiz-Apuy’s oeuvre is somewhat minimalist but terribly exciting, with layers of personal, social, and political significance draped upon each and every piece. (Out of this Light, into this Shadow, from Jan. 21 to Feb. 28)
Juan Ortiz-Apuy, Out of this Light, into this Shadow
Speaking of the personal, the social and the political, let’s hop across the pond to Europe (by way of rue Sherbrooke). Van Gogh to Kandinsky: Impressionism to Expressionism, 1900-1914 at the Musee des beaux-arts de Montréal marshals us over France and Germany (and back again), and connects two seemingly disparate artistic movements. The political context alone of this prewar era gives fascinating perspective to a remarkable period of creativity and exchange between French and German artists. (Until Jan. 25)
Saules au coucher du soleil de Vincent van Gogh (1888) / Kröller‑Müller Museum, Otterlo, The Netherlands; Photo Art Resource, NY
In a final coup de grace (screw you, seasonal affective disorder! Ta ta, dubiety!), let’s take our now leavened spirits over to Galerie de l’UQAM for a bit of defiance and disorder. The Disorderliness of Things features works exploring the democratic dimensions of disobedience that defy authority and convention. Stoke that fire in your belly with red-hot pieces by Michel de Broin, Christine Major, Melanie Smith and Rafael Ortega (just to name a sizzling few). (From Jan. 9 to Feb. 21)
Melanie Smith et Rafael Ortega, Bulto, extrait vidéo, 2011. Avec l’aimable autorisation de la Galerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich.