Société des musées du Québec

Need an energy boost?

Claude Benoit, museologist

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Van de Graaff chamber, Électrium  © Hydro-Québec

Autumn strips the forests of their appeal. Skis and snowshoes impatiently await. The laws of greyness, cold and humid weather set in. Nevertheless, Québec’s museums are there to feed the body and soul! Their exhibitions and activities offer everything you need to refuel your energy supply. 

Recharge your batteries…

  • When you enter the Van de Graaff 400,000V chamber at the Électrium, your hair will surely stand on end! From the movement of electrons to magnetic fields and the laws of electricity, Hydro-Québec’s Electricity Interpretation Centre in Saint-Julie will reveal the secrets behind Québec’s powerful hydroelectric network and the technological innovations that will soon transform your daily life.
  •  A 100% sustainable world by 2050 – possibility or pipe dream? Many responses and solutions are within reach, but they depend on our commitment to studying and implementing them, as conveyed by Renewable Energy: Time to Decide, an exhibition currently on display at Biosphère, Montréal’s environment museum. Try pedalling enough to light up a lightbulb or turn on a fan! The exhibit is a nice initiation to the various energy production technologies and how they can be implemented at a city-wide – and even global – level.

Keep your inner flame alive…

La Pulperie de Chicoutimi
La Pulperie de Chicoutimi
CC BY-NC-SA
  • Follow in the footsteps of a creator striving to infuse peoples’ daily lives with beauty. The exhibition, Dallaire. From Idea to Object, at Musée de la civilisation in Québec City, presents the tremendous amount of work hidden behind designing the Olympic torch of the Montréal Games in 1976, the BIXI self-serve bicycle and many other functional and aesthetic objects. From park benches to yogurt containers, the exhibit showcases many objects that are evocative of contemporary Québecois lifestyles!
  • Rub shoulders with visionary men. Rediscover the epic Chicoutimi Pulp Company of the beginning of the 20th century, through the exhibition, La main à la pâte, at the Pulperie de Chicoutimi. Relive the socioeconomic context and meet the ambitious men who constructed industrial cathedrals that forever marked the landscape of the region. 
  • Visit models of courage and ingenuity. Meet First Nations women, women of vocation, and especially, the King’s Wards, alongside Jeanne Mance, Marguerite Bourgeoys and Marguerite d’Youville, who contributed to the growth of Montréal and of the country. These women, honourable representatives of religious communities, participated in the foundation of hospitals and schools, thereby laying the framework of our social system. Until December 22, 2017, they are honoured at Maison Saint-Gabriel, as part of the 375 years at the heart of the action! exhibition.
    As a complementary exhibit, Jeanne Mance (1606-1673) From France to New France, at Musée des Hospitalières de l’Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal, offers a new appreciation of the vision and determination of the cofounder of Ville-Marie, which today has become a large metropolis.
  • Let yourself be inspired by a famous inventor! The Museum of ingenuity in Valcourt presents two immersive and interactive experiences that are well worth the trip. The animated show of the Passion as a way of life exhibit tells the story of J. Armand Bombardier. It conveys the creativity and know-how that he employed to create amazing machines. The A passion for innovation exhibit sheds light on conceptualization and production processes, and on the place held by planes, trains, jet skis and snowmobiles in today’s society.

Stock up on warmth, fragrances and colours

  • Immerse yourself in the Tropical Rainforest at the Montréal Biodôme! The daytime temperature fluctuates between 25 and 28°C all year long. You’ll be amazed by the diversity of flora and fauna every step of the way. Observe the trees with buttresses and stilt roots or the strangler figs and epiphytes that permanently inhabit the branches. Be sure not to miss the piranhas, minuscule poison arrow frogs, or the anaconda or yacare caiman. Along the way, say hello to the brightly feathered tanagers, spoonbills, parrots, two-toed sloths, bats, and last but not least, the capybara, the largest rodent in the world.
  • Still keen on seeing more? Dive into the enveloping atmosphere of the Montréal Botanical Garden’sExhibition Greenhouses. In a single glimpse, the Tropical Rainforest presents a scene that is impossible to find in a natural environment: an upper canopy that is connected to the rich garnished soil. The Hacienda, nicknamed the “Sunlight Conservatory,” is characterized by its low walls and window-pierced façades that define the courtyard spaces. Featuring a small pool and terraces, the setting is reminiscent of Hispanic gardens. Cacti and succulents grow alongside lithops, the smallest specimens, also known as “living stones,” due to their ingenious camouflage that protects them from herbivores.

Ride the current…

Multisensory movie "Aquavolt", Odyssée des Bâtisseurs
Multisensory movie "Aquavolt", Odyssée des Bâtisseurs
CC BY-NC-SA
  • Seemingly walk on the water basin of the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region, where important hydroelectric installations generate the power necessary for our survival. Understanding the management and conservation challenges facing this vital resource is what the exhibit, Au-delà de l’eau, at the Odyssée des Bâtisseurs in Alma, proposes. It’s a unique opportunity to put our connectedness to the test.
  • Follow the urban water circuit at the Centre d’interprétation de l’eau in Laval. From water collection and distribution to purification, domestic use, and finally, sanitation prior to its return to supply networks, the Le chemin de l’eau : de la rivière à la rivière exhibit initiates young and old to the conservation and responsible use of the very precious blue gold.
  • Venture inside a water tower in the middle of the Saint-Maurice River, explore underground vaults, discover how a paper-making machine functions, experiment with water pumping and filtration, and admire the multimedia fresco of a monumental forest. Racines et Identité, an exhibition at the Centre d’histoire de l’industrie papetière BORÉALIS takes you on a tour of the old Canadian International Paper factory in Trois-Rivières, in which you will see workers from the past, whose commentaries express the challenges of this important industry.

Try somethingout of the ordinary

Make a stop at the Montréal Science Centre to try your hand at turning The Windmills of the Imagination. Put your senses to the test, and launch the PTEEM machines, constituting the first electrical energy to water converter in the world. The machines were created by artist, Florent Veilleux, in his search for surreal solutions to utopian problems.