At the Summit Conference on the Economy and Employment held in 1996, Quebec cultural sector leaders submitted a major project to democratize and raise awareness of the arts and culture. Several months later, initial funding commitments were obtained from the government; private enterprise followed suit; and the cultural sector began preparing the first edition of the Journées de la culture.
On June 17, 1997, Quebec’s National Assembly unanimously adopted a special motion designating the last Friday of September and the two following days as Journées nationales de la culture, or days dedicated to the celebration of arts and culture
In September 1997, the first edition of the Journées nationales de la culture was held. The theme was Ça manquait à notre culture, (our culture was missing something) and 500 organizations, artists and craftspeople attracted more than 160,000 visitors.
To date, 547 municipalities have officially adopted a resolution proclaiming the last Friday of September and the following two days to be the Journées de la culture.
SOME IMPORTANT DATES
The Cultural Logbook, a tool for raising awareness of the arts and culture, was produced and distributed to more than 8,000 elementary schoolchildren.
The 10th anniversary of the Journées de la culture was an opportunity to produce the visual art event Les Convertibles. Activities comprising the 10th edition of the Journées de la culture were attended by 350,000 people in 290 municipalities.
To better reflect its mission, the Secrétariat des Journées de la culture changed its legal name to Culture pour tous.
The Cultural Mediation Research Group was established.
The interactive online version of the Cultural Logbook was launched. The Logbook was chosen as one of the favourite sites (Coup de coeur) of the online magazine Écolebranchée.com.
The Je m’affiche pour la culture ! event was held at Montreal’s Place des Festivals.
The Journées de la culture celebrate Haiti with Viv Ayiti, an exhibition of Haitian art featuring more than 50 artists and held in 9 cultural venues and institutions.
Métro Arts project: 10,000 people attend 36 hours of activities held in Montreal’s metro system.
The Je m’affiche pour la culture ! caravan travelled more than 13,000 km and attracted over 62,800 people.
Establishment of the Passeurs de rêves cultural mentoring program to encourage children to stay in school.
The theme of the Journées de la culture was On reçoit de la grande visite (a host of visitors coming). The Journées de la culture were attended by more than 233,000 people in 440 Quebec cities, towns and villages.
The Passeurs de rêves cultural mentoring program held its first group workshops for Secondary 3 (grade 9) young people, who were invited to talk about arts and culture in the Agora éphémère, an installation created by sculptor Gilles Bissonnet.