Mar 14–Nov 24, 2024

Reading Landscapes

1920, rue Baile, Montréal H3H 2S6
Wed–Fri 11 am–6 pm, Thu 11 am–9 pm, Sat, Sun 11 am–5 pm

The concept of landscape is in constant flux as cultural context shapes living relationships with its surroundings. Multiple narratives describe the landscape as either resource, scenery, infrastructure, environment, everyday life, or ancestral knowledge. How landscape is perceived, used, and engaged with can be interpreted through its published representations.

Reading Landscapes is a small selection of books from the CCA Collection that reflect on the ever-changing concept of landscape. The books on display bring together various landscape readings and highlight singular publishing techniques and formats, recognizing the gaps intrinsic to the history of publishing that are present in our library’s collection.

By constructing images, highlighting what is not ordinarily visible, instructing on how to use it, or denouncing the irreversible effects of extractivism, authors, architects, and artists have chosen the book format as their channel of expression. While some use the medium of the book to disseminate their narrative to a broader audience, others approach the book as a tool to capture an idea and make it more tangible in a limited edition. The form of the book itself helps shape the vision of landscape presented. In some cases, the landscape cannot be contained in the traditional codex format, expanding out of its binding, or fragmenting into different volumes or periodicals. In other cases, choices between engravings and illustrations instead of photography convey a more subjective and imagined landscape.