Projet Pangée, operated by Julie Côté (who holds an MA in Library and Information Sciences from McGill University) and Joani Tremblay (a recent Concordia MFA grad), occupies a space in Montreal’s downtown Belgo Building, a former department store and garment industry workshop that now houses numerous art galleries and studios. When the previous host, Galerie Pangée (where Côté worked under then-director Margot Ross), closed its doors in 2012, it became office and storage space for the art consulting and secondary-market dealings of founder Pierre-Laurent Boullais. In 2015, Côte asked Boullais if she could take over the gallery, and re-launched it as Projet Pangée that November. In January 2016, Tremblay curated the gallery’s second show, “Drawing is the New Painting,” and subsequently came on board as co-director.
Côté and Tremblay describe their arrangement with Boullais as a “golden opportunity”: they have carte blanche, and he fully finances the project without pushing them to operate as a conventional commercial gallery. They do not represent artists, though they’re working on building relationships with collectors.
Curatorially, their focus is on local and international emerging artists and they emphasize youth, colour and playfulness, an attitude that also manifests in their effusive approach to installation: their space is often filled to profusion with works hung salon-style, displayed on zigzagging labyrinths of folding walls, or sprawling across the floor.