THE 60S MONTREAL THINKS BIG
A synthesis and a complement to a 2004 exhibition at the Canadian Centre for Architecture, this book deals with urban development projects conceived for Montreal in the booming 1960’s, many of which were actually built.
Clearly, this work results from major research efforts and it very rare documents, be they vintage photos, maps or excerpts of written reports.
Of the three text sections, the second is the most interesting and actually deals with urban and architectural issues per se. The first is essentially sociological and disconnected from the book’s central topic, built environment. The third section consists of a pseudo-conversation between three experts that could have been improved considerably with more rigorous polishing.
The work is a very high quality production, in full colour with thick paper. There are some qualms, however. The large and recent aerial colour photos beginning and closing the book are questionable features. Are their yellowish hue and their very short depth of field artistic characteristics somehow reminiscent of the 60’s? Also, captions for many photos do not include the date when each was taken, what is quite annoying and surprising for such a publication.