Train, a Railroad to Dreams: A World in Miniature

First presented at Pointe-à-Callière from February 11 to September 6, 2021, the exhibition Train, A railroad to Dreams was produced by Pointe-à-Callière, Montréal Archaeology and History Complex, with the participation of Exporail, the Canadian Railway Museum. The exhibition presented at Exporail until September 5, 2022, renamed Train, a Railroad to Dreams: A World in Miniature, is devoted to model trains which, beyond being a toy, imitates the reality of the railway. They recall a great history, that of Montreal, the cradle of the railway adventure in Canada, and that of the companies that have marked it.

Since the advent of the steam locomotive in the 19th century, trains have been synonymous with development and opening up to the world. It evokes the spirit of adventure and discovery as well as meetings, departures and reunions on the platform of a station. For some people, the train reminds them of one of their first childhood toys, while for others, young or old, it is a real passion!

The train is undoubtedly one of those objects that mankind constantly reproduces, in all its forms and in different ways. Faithful models or simple toys for children, there are model trains since its invention.

The spirit of play awakens our identity, our childhood and our openness to the world of travel and technology. The declination of the models is endless and the scales go from very small to very large. We can take some of them in our hands while others invite us to climb aboard.

On this path, two perspectives are presented to the visitors:

At first, that of the smaller than oneself, where the child’s imagination in front of the toy contrasts with the adult’s lust for for the collector’s item.

Secondly, that of life size, where the child and the adult become capable of sharing the same fascination and the same feeling of smallness in front of the fifty vehicles which are presented in the Grand Gallery.

This exhibition offers a playful, technological and historical look at the world of railroading on different scales!

Whether imaginary or real, this trip on rails has everything to make you dream. All aboard!