Coordinates: 45°29′55″N 73°34′48″W / 45.4987°N 73.5801°W / 45.4987; -73.5801

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (French: Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal) is a major museum in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Founded in 1860, making it Canada's oldest art institution, it moved to its current location in 1912 thanks to a large donation from businessman James Ross.

It is Montreal's largest museum and is amongst the most prominent in Canada. The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is a member of the International Group of Organizers of Large-scale Exhibitions, also known as the Bizot Group, a forum which allows the leaders of the largest museums in the world to exchange works and exhibitions.

The museum is located on the historic Golden Square Mile stretch of Sherbrooke Street.


The museum is partitioned into three pavilions: a 1912 Beaux Arts building designed by William Sutherland Maxwell and brother Edward Maxwell, now named the Michal and Renata Hornstein Pavilion; the modernist Jean-Noël Desmarais Pavilion across the street, designed by Moshe Safdie, built in 1991; and the Liliane and David M. Stewart Pavilion.

While the Desmarais Pavilion houses works of art from around the world, the Hornstein's focus is specifically Quebec history. Together, the edifices house about 30,000 pieces.

On February 14, 2007, the museum's administration board announced its project to convert Erskine and American United Church, located on Sherbrooke West street, into a Canadian art pavilion. This new pavilion allowed the museum to double the display surface currently dedicated to Canadian artists. Erskine and American United Church, a Romanesque Revival church with Tiffany stained glass, dating from 1893-94, was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1998. Named the Claire and Marc Bourgie pavilion, as a recognition of the family's outstanding financial support it opened in 2010.

1972 robbery

On September 4, 1972, the museum was the site of the largest art theft in Canadian history, when armed thieves made off with jewellery, figurines and 18 paintings worth a total of $2 million at the time (approximately $10.6 million today), including works by Delacroix, Gainsborough and a rare Rembrandt landscape ("Landscape with Cottages"). The works have never been recovered. In 2003, the Globe and Mail estimated that the Rembrandt alone would be worth $1 million.


The Museum is affiliated with: CMA, CHIN, and Virtual Museum of Canada.

  • Mobile in the museum

  • Maryse Casol silk scarves at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts boutique