Publication Date: 2017
Our Lady of La Difesa Church – Chiesa Madonna della Difesa – lies in the heart of Montreal's Italian community. In 2002, the Government of Canada designated the church – which features the work of renowned Italian-Canadian artist Guido Nincheri – a National Historic Site. A plaque, mounted on the building’s façade commemorating this recognition, was unveiled in October 2005 during an official ceremony in the presence of dignitaries and community representatives. Among the reasons for this designation were the church’s prominent location within Little Italy in northeast Montréal; its Italian Renaissance-influenced decorative interior, notably the extensive frescoes in the apse, on the crossing vaults, and dome; the building’s Romanesque-Lombard-inspired exterior; and the parish’s unique place in Montréal’s collective consciousness, where it ranks as a “rare and eloquent expression of Canada’s Italian community.” This updated volume, fifty years after Menchini's original work, features a number of archival photos alongside scores of new photos highlighting Nincheri's work as well as that of other local artists.