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The Art of the Miniature

Selection from the Brousseau Inuit Art Collection

April 11, 2014 to November 15, 2015 Charles Baillairgé Pavilion

Come admire the beauty of the miniature works of art in the Raymond Brousseau collection, presented in a brand new family space in the Charles Baillairgé pavilion designed with children in mind. Through the exhibition’s three captivating themes – The Inuit People, Animals of the North and Games – you will be appreciate the wealth of this secular culture and in particular the Inuit spiritual universe and the profound bond that exists between the Inuit and nature.

Next, enjoy our play areas, where you will fall under the spell of Inuit throat singing, build an inuksuk or try your hand at some of the games practised since time immemorial by this Northern people: dominoes, string games and the cup-and-ball game. 

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    View of the exhibition The Art of the Miniature. Selection from The Brousseau Inuit Art Collection.
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    View of the exhibition The Art of the Miniature. Selection from The Brousseau Inuit Art Collection.
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    View of the exhibition The Art of the Miniature. Selection from The Brousseau Inuit Art Collection.
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    View of the exhibition The Art of the Miniature. Selection from The Brousseau Inuit Art Collection.
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    View of the exhibition The Art of the Miniature. Selection from The Brousseau Inuit Art Collection.
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The exhibition

The Inuit (a word meaning “human” or “person” in Inuktitut), a nomadic people, sculpted very small pieces that could be easily transported from one encampment to another, working in stone but also in many other materials such as bone and walrus tusk. The status of these miniatures, used in earlier times as talismans, amulets or in educational games, has changed over time: originally gris-gris and later currency, today they are seen not as mere small-scale replicas but as works of art in their own right. They tell us of the profound connection the Inuit have with nature and their spiritual universe and bear witness to the survival of a traditional way of life in the modern world.

Thanks to the financial support of Hydro-Québec  and the generosity of visionary art collector Raymond Brousseau, in 2005 the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec acquired the Brousseau Inuit Art Collection consisting of 2635 pieces. What you see  before you is only a fraction of this remarkable collection that will be showcased  in 2015 in a gallery dedicated to it in the new Pierre Lassonde Pavilion.

We also invite you to view a few Inuit sculptures in the rotunda on the second floor of the Gérard Morisset pavilion.