Coppersmith Albert Gilles was born in Paris at the end of the 19th century. His illustrious career as a metalwork artist started with winning first prize at the “Arts Decoratifs” in Paris in 1926. A few years later, Gilles moved to California and continued his career as a decorator for Universal Studios, later working on commissions for both Walt Disney and Pope Pius XII. Later he moved to Quebec, Canada, where he continued to practice the art of metal embossing, handing down the skills to his family. Today, people come to tour the museum and see the work of Albert Gilles, plus pieces created by other artisans from around the world. Visitors can even try their hand at making a piece of copper art themselves.
Things to know before you go
- The museum is wheelchair accessible.
- Along with displaying artworks the museum also explains the process of copper mining.
- There’s a shop on-site selling copper works and jewelry made by the Gilles family.
- Look out for the ‘Christorama’ – the story of Christ told in 50 silver panels.
- Gilles’ copper work also decorates the roof of the famous Frontenac Hotel in Quebec City.
How to get there
The Albert Gilles Copper Art Museum is located at 7450, boulevard Sainte-Anne (Route 138), between Saint-Anne and Montmorency. It’s around 15 minutes’ drive outside Quebec City and is easily accessible from the city by car or taxi; parking is available on-site. Public transport options are very limited.
When to get there
The museum is open 7 days a week, year-round. It may close on some public holidays so check in advance if you’re planning to visit on a major holiday. It’s located close to Montmorency Falls, and visitors can easily visit both places in one trip.
Visit Montmorency Falls
Impressive at any time of the year, the Montmorency Falls just outside Quebec City are well worth visiting. At 272 ft tall, the falls are almost 100 ft higher than those at Niagara. Visitors can walk across the suspension bridge over the cascade for a bird’s-eye view of the rushing water, then explore the surrounding park and its cafes and restaurants.
- Shrine of Saint-Anne-de-Beaupré (Sanctuaire de Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré)
- Orleans Island (Ile d'Orléans)
- Via Ferrata Montmorency
- Montmorency Falls Park (Parc de la Chute-Montmorency)
- Quebec Museum of Civilization (Musée de la Civilisation)
- Port of Quebec (Port de Québec)
- Quebec City Old Port (Vieux-Port)
- Notre-Dame-des-Victoires Church (Église Notre-Dame-des-Victoires)
- Quebec Royal Square (Place-Royale)
- Notre-Dame de Québec Basilica-Cathedral
- Museum of Francophone America (Musée de l'Amérique Francophone)
- Old Quebec (Vieux-Québec)
- Fort Museum (Musée du Fort)
- Quebec Lower Town (Basse-Ville)
- Petit Champlain District (Quartier Petit Champlain)