Montreal Museum Preps Leonard Cohen-Inspired Art Exhibition

"Leonard Cohen – A Crack in Everything" debuts on November 9th, one year after the singer-songwriter's death

An extensive art exhibit dedicated to the legacy of Leonard Cohen will open in Montreal in November. Credit: Michael Putland/Getty

A contemporary art exhibition inspired by Leonard Cohen will open at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Montreal (MAC). "Leonard Cohen – A Crack in Everything" debuts on November 9th, one year after the singer-songwriter's death, and lasts through April 9th.

The exhibit is both a review of Cohen's work – archival materials include 50 years of writings, recordings and drawings – and a display of his influence on newly commissioned work in the visual arts, virtual reality, music and writing. The exhibition comprises artists, filmmakers and musicians from 10 different countries. 

"Leonard Cohen – A Crack in Everything" was not originally intended to be a posthumous tribute. "When we came up with the idea for this exhibition, we went to seek the agreement of Leonard Cohen, who was thrilled with the project and the angle we were proposing," explained John Zeppetelli, MAC's Director and Chief Curator, in a statement. "It was important for him that this exhibit would not be of a biographical nature. From the start, the project was thought as a contemporary artistic exploration of a life's work, and in that sense, he was thrilled to be able to inspire other artists through his art."

Following Cohen's death last November at age 82, the function of the exhibition changed. "It has also become a tribute to this global star," Zeppetelli continued. "We have a great responsibility to the public and the approach adopted by the artists will definitely be sensitive to this aspect, to reflect both our gratitude and our respect for this Montréal artist."

The Cohen exhibit coincides with the 375th anniversary of Montréal's founding. "The public will have a chance to see the genius of this great Montrealer who, through his poetry and profound humanity, still reaches out to his fans all over the world," added Martin Coiteux, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Land Occupancy for the Montréal region. "He makes Quebecers proud."