When I started to explore Montreal a few years ago, with my own very European background, it was a real pleasure to discover the possibility of walking across a city with the feeling of not being in an urban environment. The labyrinth of Montreal’s alleyways is a city in the city, without pollution, whether it was noise, cars, advertising or simply people. And in some of these back alleys, with time, I began to notice some amazing street art and graffiti spots. Several of these evolved, and became very popular, while some others finished to be abandoned by the artists. However, it was always the same pleasure to observe how artists succeeded in transforming places that were not aimed to be street art spots. The one I present below became a regular stop in my street art escapes when Gawd and Waxhead shared a studio 2 years ago and decided to paint the back wall of this place. Then this spring, Nixon, Kazy, Zoltan Veevaete and Kevin Ledo raised the alleyway to the next level by adding some impressive art work. Rapidly tagged, these guys came back in July to fix their pieces. It was also the perfect timing for Zoltan and Ledo to collaborate on a mural they called “Sand White in 3D” (above).
First piece by Waxhead and Gawd, summer 2012:
Following pieces by Nixon, Kazy, Zoltan Veevaete, June- July 2014:
Other pieces of Zoltan V. and Nixon, between June and July 2014:
Artists in Montreal these days are stuck working in their studios or homes, since the last few weeks have been incredibly cold! So, what follows bellow were mostly done in the fall and early winter. Nearly too cold to paint on walls, Labrona and 500M managed to get outside for a few hours to paint a fresh piece, their first of 2014. Produkt also was very productive on the streets this fall, upping his street art game. And also works by HoarKor, Nixon (old piece, but great location) Gawd, FLN, Waxhead and Cryote. Stay warm.
When I started to hunt Montreal illegal street art, it appeared to me that a city is not static as usual people can think it. When you look closer, you can observe the walls change by the art that sticks on them. I was able to see the evolution of the streets and in the same time I saw ordinary places becoming amazing spots. When an artist, or a group of artists take over a wall, a door, and make it themselves, they give a soul to the city. Below you will see the transformation of some pieces whether completed or fixed. Interestingly, from a collective action or an individual one, it results that the urban environment is likely to be changed and magnified. The walls are for everyone but some of them exclusively belong to some artists. Hope they stay like this!