Luminothérapie, 12th edition

An interactive, luminous art walk to celebrate the joys of winter in Montreal

Press Release | For immediate release

Montreal, December 2, 2021 – Looking for a great way to cope with short winter days? The 12th edition of Luminothérapie, the iconic Montreal winter event, opens today! Until February 27, 2022, a series of luminous and interactive works will be on display in the heart of the Quartier des Spectacles. Each of the five glittering works offer visitors a distinctive experience, and there will also be a daily moment of sound and light titled Cœur dansant, inviting the public to get up and dance.

For the last 12 years, Luminothérapie has brought together a diverse audience to soak up some winter light with digital installations by local creators. As they did during the 2020 edition, visitors will be able to stroll between four different interactive and contemplative works, enjoy a captivating video projection and participate in a festive, upbeat moment of sound and light. Everything will be safe thanks to compliance with current public health regulations. Luminothérapie will take place in the area bounded by Président-Kennedy Ave., Saint-Laurent Blvd., Balmoral St. and Sainte-Catherine St. West; the latter remains closed to vehicle traffic between De Bleury and Saint-Laurent. Luminothérapie is part of an extensive, fun-filled winter program in the Quartier des Spectacles.

“Montreal is known for its lively cultural scene, its joyful spirit and its nordicity, which is celebrated in a beautiful way every year thanks to Luminothérapie. I would like to thank the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership for preparing such a beautiful program, with installations that are definitely worth the trip and high-quality animation,” said Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montreal.

“What a joy it is to see the Quartier des Spectacles shine so brightly each year thanks to the hard work of key players in the industry and our exceptionally creative digital artists, with whom we are joining forces to make Montreal’s cultural core an essential place to celebrate the joys of winter,” said Monique Simard, chair of the board of directors, Quartier des Spectacles Partnership.


Luminothérapie invites the public to discover the Canadian premiere of this year’s centrepiece work, Echoes – a voice from uncharted waters by Austrian multidisciplinary artist Mathias Gmachl. The work, a majestic five-tonne whale that dominates Place des Festivals, is co-produced in collaboration with MuseumsQuartier in Vienna, Austria, Lugano Arte e Cultura in Lugano, Switzerland. The piece symbolizes the importance of preserving the flora and fauna of our blue planet. Next, look up at the façades of the Wilder Building and UQAM’s Pavillon Président-Kennedy to enjoy Nova, a new video projection by Serious Computer Group. The projection, inspired by the motion of water, presents abstract images linked to Montreal’s rivers. Continue exploring on the north side of Place des Festivals, where an iconic Luminothérapie work awaits: Impulse by Lateral Office and CS Design in collaboration with EGP Group. Presented several times in the Quartier des Spectacles, the work’s large illuminated seesaws invite you to help create a fun, endlessly renewing ephemeral environment. Then, go to the Parterre and abandon yourself to the swaying stems of Entre les rangs. This installation by KANVA Architecture comprises thousands of flexible stems that create a magical immersive setting reminiscent of Quebec’s wheat fields. Lastly, make your way to the Place des Arts Esplanade, where the imposing Iceberg by ATOMIC3 and APPAREIL architecture presents a visual and auditory symphony. Co-presented with Place des Arts, the work’s tunnel of archways simulates icebergs and their unique sounds.


Each evening at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. throughout the winter, the Quartier des Spectacles will become a dance floor for a few minutes, with Cœur dansant! A follow-up to 2020’s Cœur battant, this new moment is focused on the Quartier and includes an original video projection, making it a uniquely unifying creation. The surroundings spring to life for five minutes of celebration, immersing visitors in the ambiance of a major event. The work, created by David Drury, Bruno Rafie and Benoît Piccolini, combines music, vocals, lighting and video projections; it is an irresistible invitation to celebrate.

“In 2020, the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership showed its support for the cultural sector and Montreal’s downtown core. This year, with Cœur dansant, we’re celebrating the public! It’s five minutes of shared joy, with the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Complexe Desjardins, Hydro-Québec and Place des Arts all joining the party,” said Catherine Girard Lantagne, programming director for the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership.


December 2, 2021 to February 6, 2022
Monday to Thursday: Noon to 10 p.m.
Friday to Sunday: 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Cœur dansant: Every night at 7 p.m and 8 p.m.

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The amenities and installations that comprise Luminothérapie were designed with public health in mind, including physical distancing. These experiences allow visitors to live and relax safely in the Quartier des Spectacles. The Partnership urges all Montrealers to follow recommendations for preventing the spread of COVID-19.


  • Public transportation: numerous STM bus routes and more than 10 metro stations on the green and orange lines serve the area. 
  • Cycling: four-season bike paths and lanes run through the downtown area.
  • Driving: free street parking on weeknights from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and on weekends from December 3 to January 2.
  • The area includes accommodations for people with reduced mobility. Please see individual venue websites for details. 


Luminothérapie is Quebec’s largest competition for temporary public art installations. Each year, Luminothérapie presents an original, interactive and captivating winter experience in Montreal’s Quartier des Spectacles with a major installation in Place des Festivals. In 2020 and 2021, special editions took place in the Quartier, with a series of installations and a moment of sound and light for an extended experience. Luminothérapie seeks to spur creativity in the design of urban installations and digital art. Several cultural districts around the world have shown interest in its interactive art installations created for public spaces by local artists and creators. Since 2016, 12 works created for the Quartier des Spectacles have been exhibited on nearly 100 occasions in more than 50 cities in Canada and around the world.

To learn more about the competition, and for a list of previous years’ winners, see the Luminothérapie press kit. 


The Quartier des Spectacles is Montréal’s cultural heart, boasting North America’s most concentrated and diverse group of cultural venues as well as numerous festivals and events. The Quartier also hosts innovative urban installations involving cutting-edge lighting design and immersive environments. The Quartier des Spectacles has become an international showcase for digital public art.
The Quartier des Spectacles Partnership, founded in 2003, is a non-profit organization with more than 85 members active in the district. It is responsible for animating the Quartier des Spectacles by programming cultural activities, managing and animating public spaces, providing distinctive illumination and promoting the Quartier as a must-visit cultural destination. The Partnership benefits from the support of the Ville de Montréal. 

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The Société de la Place des Arts de Montréal is mandated with operating a performing arts venue, managing Place des Arts in Montreal and the Amphithéâtre Fernand-Lindsay in Joliette, and with establishing the artistic programming at the Maison symphonique for organizations other than the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. These activities specifically aim to provide a place of residence for major arts organizations, increase access to the various forms of performing arts, and promote Quebec’s artistic and cultural life. Place des Arts produces, co-produces, and hosts artistic works from home and abroad, featuring both emerging artists and international stars, in collaboration with arts organizations, producers, creative artists, and the entire cultural milieu.

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Quartier des Spectacles Partnership
Mélanie Mingotaud 
Communications Mingotwo
(514) 582-5272 



Echoes - a voice from uncharted waters
Design and production: Mathias Gmachl
Special thanks: Jana Winderen, Roosa Tulvio, James Fox, Jon Wozencroft and James Solly

A co-production of the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership, the MuseumsQuartier Wien (Vienna, Austria) and LAC Lugano Arte e Cultura (Lugano, Switzerland)

Creation and production: LATERAL OFFICE and CS Design
Collaboration: EGP Group
Sound designer: Mitchell Akiyama
Fabrication: Generique Design

A production of the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership

Entre les rangs
Creation and production: KANVA Architecture

A co-production of KANVA Architecture and the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership

Artistic directors, lighting designers and producers: Félix Dagenais and Louis-Xavier Gagnon-Lebrun

Architectural design: APPAREIL architecture
Sound designer: Jean-Sébastien Côté
Interactive module designer: Philippe Jean

A co-production of ATOMIC3 and the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership and co-presented by Place des Arts


Creation and production: Serious Computer Group
Design, video capture, editing, programming and compositing : Nina Bouchard and Evan Montpellier

A co-production of Serious Computer Group and the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership in collaboration with Polytechnique Montréal and with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.


Cœur dansant
Sound design: David Drury
Light design: Bruno Rafie
Art direction video projection and motion design: Benoit Piccolini
Motion design: Louis Robert
Lighting programming: Hugo Ralet

A production of the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership

Participants :

  • Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal
  • Complexe Desjardins
  • Hydro-Québec
  • Place des Arts