Think of an art institution on the scale of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and what probably comes to mind is a place to go for the respectful appreciation of great works. What you probably don’t tend to think of is creating art of your own within those same walls that exhibit Chagall and Warhol. But that perception is beginning to change. Art Hive, a worldwide network of community-access spaces dedicated to art-based inclusion, now has a space in the MMFA basement.
Dr. Janis Timm-Bottos, associate professor in creative arts therapies at Concordia University, first hatched what became the Art Hive concept 20 years ago in Albuquerque, N. M., where she had moved from her native Baltimore. At the time, she was shifting from being a physical therapist to an art therapist; feeling disillusioned with the American medical managed-care system, she became more involved with colleagues involved in health care for the homeless.