Stéphane Aquin, Director of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA)

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David Nathan

  • © Tony Powell
While the pandemic put the cultural world on hold, Stéphane Aquin, formerly chief curator for the Hirshhorn Museum and sculpture gardenin Washington, took over the reins of the MMFA

How does the future of the MMFA look to you?


I feel very confident about the future of the MMFA. We’re “taking advantage” of the pandemic, so to speak, to have a global strategic reflection about the mission of the museum. It’s obvious that we need to rethink the museum’s model for the coming months, with four key areas in mind: community, virtuality, diversity, and artists.

Concretely, what will change?


We want to develop the virtual side of the MMFA. The pandemic made this a priority. We will create an app allowing visitors to scan works of art via a QR code; when they do, the artist will literally appear on their screen. This will offer much more interaction and make the experience more fluid. The exhibits will also be accessible online; the digitization of the works therefore needs to be considered. We hope the museum will be more present in the city, particularly through public installations.

How can you tell an exhibition is successful?

When it offers a new perspective on an artist you thought you knew. This is the case with the Riopelle exhi­bition, which successfully provided this indispensable new outlook.