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AgoraPHILIA: A Place for Assembly in Square Viger, Montreal


AgoraPHILIA: A Place for Assembly in Square Viger, Montreal

Cory, Lindsay Ann (2012) AgoraPHILIA: A Place for Assembly in Square Viger, Montreal. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Square Viger was designed as an opulent and lush Victorian park in the mid- nineteenth century for the use of nearby wealthy residents. The park had trees lining promenades, benches, fountains, and a glass greenhouse. Over time, the influx of industry brought more working class citizens to the Ville-Marie borough and pushed the bourgeoisie to other areas in the early twentieth century. Historians of Montreal’s built environment mark this change in demographic as the decline of the park. Since then the park has undergone drastic redevelopment due to changes in transportation infrastructure. Sculptor Charles Daudelin (1920-2001) redesigned the site and built the Agora in 1983, but his designs were met with animosity from the media and the public the site was intended for.
Using archival research, interviews with artists, and site analysis, this thesis investigates the Agora’s appropriation by homeless groups and individuals and the artistic interventions the site has also incurred. Square Viger is a telling example of Montreal’s push for modernization but is also an indication of the large-scale redevelopment projects that have taken place on the island. In March 2012, Square Viger has been defined as a threatened emblematic site by Heritage Montreal and its redevelopment looms in the very near future. With this redevelopment, I believe the social-cultural and design heritage of the site and the Agora will be forgotten. With this research, I present a methodologically inclusive investigation into this fraught public space and its values as a space for appropriation, community, and artistic practice.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Art History
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Cory, Lindsay Ann
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Art History
Date:15 April 2012
Thesis Supervisor(s):Hammond, Cynthia
Keywords:Square, Park, Homeless, Montreal, Quebec, Charles Daudelin, Daudelin, Public, Architecture, Art,
ID Code:973758
Deposited By: LINDSAY CORY
Deposited On:19 Jun 2012 18:22
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:37
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