In 2019, PHI acquired four heritage buildings with the intention of converting these sites into a new and expanded permanent cultural venue under the banner of PHI Contemporary. To celebrate the architecture of these buildings, their histories, their futures, and most importantly to pay homage to this important place in Old Montreal, PHI is illuminating the former Bonsecours Inn throughout the fall until mid-January.
At the intersection of Bonsecours Street and Saint-Paul Street East, this installation allows residents and visitors to the City of Montreal a unique look at the site before it moves into its next chapter.
Old Montreal is at the heart of the history of Montreal and allows the city to shine on the international stage. I applaud PHI’s initiative to celebrate the past and future of the former Auberge Bonsecours, thanks to an installation that highlights the heritage, but also the inventiveness of Montreal. The PHI Contemporary project will breathe new energy into Old Montreal starting in 2026. Until then, we invite Montrealers and visitors to discover a unique site, presented in an exceptional way.
Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montreal
Located on the future site of the new PHI Contemporary project planned for 2026, The House of Murmurations is a multi-sensory installation that celebrates these iconic buildings in Old Montreal. This public art project will allow residents and visitors to the City of Montreal to see the facades illuminated, as a way for us to pay tribute to all the stories that have passed through them.
Phoebe Greenberg, Founder and Chief Creative Officer, PHI
The Old Montreal's migratory birdlife seeded the poetic language of the installation; symbolically significant to cultures globally, birds have been depicted as mediators between the human and spirit worlds, or as divine messengers. Here, their ebb and flow rewards passersby’s curiosity with a colourful new perspective while opening a window into the buildings’ inspiring future.
The light experience will be active from sunset until 1am from September 19, 2022 to January 15, 2023 every day.
To complement the experience between September 22 and October 31 from Thursday through Sunday, visitors will be able to step inside the building to view The Nest, a refuge to peek inside the building and be enveloped by the sounds of migratory birds and fantastical objects. Accessible between 4pm and 10pm. The installation is available free of charge.
This project was made possible by the financial support of the City of Montreal
PHI would also like to thank UDO Light for the design and realization of the lighting and lighting creation in collaboration with PHI.