Recently I was invited on a personal tour of Station 16 Gallery in Montreal. I’ve been friendly with its founder Carlo for about four years now, ever since I facilitated an introduction between him and a local street artist. So when I told him that I would be back in my old Montreal stomping grounds, he took a couple hours out of his busy day to show me around the ever-expanding gallery.
Station 16 is located on Boulevard St-Laurent in the heart of le plateau, where the gallery’s presence has boosted the community’s economy and sprouted new growth and development for local businesses. Montreal was hit hard by the economic downturn, and there are still many empty retail spaces around. So Station 16 partnered with the annual Mural Festival to reinvigorate interest in this historical and trendy area.
The goal of Station 16 is to feature and promote local urban artists as well as international favourites. The great thing I noticed when I entered the gallery was how busy it was. Most art galleries are usually very quiet, with one or two patrons an hour, and the receptionists’ shoes usually cost more than your entire annual salary. For many people, visiting art galleries is an intimidating and perhaps snobby-elite experience that feels alienating and ostracising. Not Station 16. Kids, teenagers, families, tourists, street art enthusiasts, art collectors, and dealers abounded the ground-level gallery. It’s a very inclusive and welcoming experience, with a no-pressure enviro, and fosters a sense of community. I think that encouraging everyday people in the process of appreciating, critiquing, and collecting pieces of art is a good thing, and removes the exclusivity that surrounds the art world.
Pure Maple Sizzurp piece by What Is Adam, like an Warhol-throwback!
Took me a moment to realize those are guns.
Olek, my beloved guerilla-knitting-yarn-bombing babe with a clever turn of phrase here. This is actually a silkscreen of her work, but it comes out very 3D! It looks like there’s actual yarn in there! I’ve photographed her in Montreal, NYC, and London!
Le Diamantaire! You can’t turn a single corner in Paris without running into his street diamonds. They’re prolific!
Now this is my kind of toilet. The entire walls are covered in What Is Adam pieces, and what’s that on the loo?
It’s my boyfriend HANKSY!
Enzo Sarto is one half of my NYC favourite Enzo & Nio!
This is the back of Carlo’s computer! I see WIA, Stikki Peaches, Enzo & Nio, Shepard Fairy…. “Never forget how awesome you are.”
How could I?
Station 16 is located at 3523 Boul St-Laurent in Montreal, within walking distance from metro stops Mont-Royal or Sherbrooke. If you go, tell them Chris says hi!
“Street art isn’t dead, it’s only sleeping.”
This is by KissMama
The construction boards all around Copenhagen have provided unlimited canvases for the city’s street artists. Case in point, this gorgeous mural by Zed1.
This giant iron gun, chained to a mailbox, is by TEJN.
You can read Shepard’s account of the attack here.
This EuroTrash is pretty impressive.
Stop Graffiti? That’s so meta.
That heart above the pillar is made of guns that were taken off of the streets.
We want to live together
More to come!
Time for a photo-dump! I’ve taken hundreds of street art pics in the past two months since I arrived in Brussels, and haven’t done all that much blogging.
I’ve had this blog for eight years but and have lovingly updated it frequently (dedication + tenacity), but while I sort things out in my life, please excuse the quietude around here.
Also, before I get to the pictures, I would like to state something for the record: Twice now (or at least twice THAT I KNOW ABOUT), I have been the victim of a Catfish, in that someone has ripped my photos off of here (or my Twitter or Instagram), and created fake profiles with them. The first time happened with a fake Twitter account a few years ago, and last year it was a fake Facebook account (both of which I had successfully shut down by contacting both Twitter HQ and Facebook HQ). Now, I have been informed someone has created an OkCupid profile using my photos. FOR THE RECORD, I am NOT on OkCupid nor am I on any dating website! So if you ever see my face or my photos on ANY dating website, you can rest assured that it is fake! Please report them!
When I was alerted to the fake OkCupid profile, the guy who found it confronted the pathetic loser, who was using the username SweetTea (eww), and they immediately freaked and deleted the account. But that doesn’t mean they won’t create another one using my pics.
Seriously what kind of sad, pathetic person uses someone else’s photos like that? IT’S CREEPY, and just like the people who are fooled, I feel violated.
STOP USING MY PHOTOS. I’M SURE YOU LOOK FINE IN YOUR PHOTOS, USE THEM
Anyway, you Catfishes should know that I’m well-connected on the internet, and all your thievery will get back to me. Duncecaps.
Anyway, here’s the photo dump I promised!
First, MORE SPACE INVADER!
I invade Bruxelles!
This is the same colour scheme as the Belgian flag 🙂
This one was in Ghent 🙂
Another peeing ‘Vader.
Check out my Space Invader category for more of his work that I’ve photographed around the world!
Next – ROA!
Roa is from Belgium (Ghent, to be specific), so I have been searching really hard for his work, but so far have come up with only this one, and another I found in Ghent! WHERE ARE ALL THE ROA’S?
This is the Ghent Roa I found. I thought I’d find many more there! Gutted!
Check out my Roa category for more of his work I’ve photographed around the world!
Next – Sonke!
These were next to the Roa up above!
Check out my Sonke category!
And now some randoms:
This says, “le chemin de bonheur n’est pas une autoroute,” which translates to “the road to happiness is not a highway.”
A Jef Aerosol… beyond those doors is his exhibition, but I didn’t both to go in.
PAC MAN NOM NOM NOM.
People keep naming streets after me.
That’s a small but very noticeable Shepard Fairey (aka Obey)
This was in Ghent.
ha! yeah right.
One of my favs.
This is the end.
This mural by Shepard Fairey, aka Obey, is across the street from Shoreditch High Street overground station
This andre the giant was on the wall opposite this Stik, located inside a car park.
This was on Hackney Road near Diss Street
This was in the marketplace next to Brick Lane
Check out my Shepard Fairey category for more of his pieces that I’ve photographed around the world!
Despite a little tear here and there, this Shepard Fairey wheatpaste looks practically new. I think he might have been in London recently, but it’s so hard to keep up with the travels of all my fav artists.
This was opposite Shoreditch Town hall.
Check out my Shepard Fairey category for more of his work that I’ve photographed around the world.
Shepard Fairey rocks the murals like a BOSS. This was in an underpass near Shoreditch High Street.
I’m not sure what the 30 is supposed to indicate.
This was behind Brick Lane, and I betcha it’s really old, but to me it’s new since I just found it.
WARNING! May overload inferior equipment.
Check out my Shepard Fairey category for more of his work that I’ve photographed around the world.
About seven weeks ago when I was in New York shitty, I found everyone’s favourite Andre the giant proponent, Shepard Fairey . Now I’m in London and also finding his work errr-where!
This final one below is actually from New York, I found it off of Meserole street in Bushwick, Brooklyn, and never got to post it. You should see the amount of work I found in New York that I have yet to post! Trust me, I will.
Check out my Shepard Fairey category for more of his awesomesauce that I’ve photographed around the world.
I previously blogged about Shepard Fairey’s work all over Manhattan, but as my time there wore on, I found more and more and more examples of his stuff. Required an additional blog post!
this is on Wooster street in Soho. I have photographed this before, but way back then, I was less acquainted with his work and didn’t actually recognize that it was his!
besides the style, the fact that it says “obey” underneath, and a rose is coming out of the gun, are tell-tale signs that it is a shepard fairey.
this was also on Wooster street on an adjacent wall near the first piece. it has clearly been paint-bombed by someone who doesn’t appreciate his style. the writing says “trademark obey” and that’s andre the giant’s face inside the star.
speaking of andre, his classic obey-andre sticker was on the corner of north 7th and bedford in williamsburg, brooklyn.
another one, this one was on lafayette near the BAM cinemas. is that technically in the Cobble Hill area of brooklyn?
check out my Shepard Fairey category for more of his work that i’ve photographed!
i’ve been documenting all the Shepard Fairey pieces i’ve found in many different cities for a long time now. check out my Shepard Fairey category for more of his work. So i knew i’d probably run into one or two of his pieces in NYC while i’m here, but who knew it was like Andre The Giant just exploded all over the Lower East Side…. be prepared for a photojaculation.
and of course, other graff artists like to rip-off his style by making their own awfully-similar stickers …
Every time i heard the name kim jong il, i thought he was describing himself. kim jong il. kim jong hungry! kim jong lonely:( kim jong schexy.
you ain’t no giant. no obeying for you!
i took this photo back in the spring when i spent two weeks wandering around the back alleys of New York City, photographing graffiti. it’s a blurry blackberry snap, but upon closer inspection, i just realized this is a Shepard Fairey!!
oh and guess where in New York this was located?
how apropos, n’est-ce pas?
i have found lots of Shepard Fairey’s around Toronto and New York (check out my Shepard Fairey category for each find), but i thought i had found them all in Toronto. i don’t think he’s been here for a few years, so to find some of his OBEY stickers still lingering about is a real treat. i found this practically unblemished OBEY sticker on queen west near dovercourt
speaking of Shepard Fairey…..
i found out recently that The Gladstone Hotel quietly opened a free exhibit on their 3rd and 4th floors called POST-GRAFFITI. it features the work of Shepard Fairey (the Obama HOPE poster!!!!), Dolk, Retna, Anthony Lister, Dan Bergeron (aka FAUXREEL), and yes, Banksy.
they’re having a launch party for it on the 27th in conjunction with another art exhibit, BUT they’ll charge ya $5. if you go any day between 12pm and 5pm, it’s free to the public.
apart from his obvious style, there are lots of visual cues to his previous work here.
more shepard fairey. basically the whole 3rd floor was dedicated to him.
this is Anthony Lister. he has this motif with golden award trophies that he works with often.
this piece by Anthony Lister previously appeared this summer at the Show & Tell Gallery
i was first introduced to his work when i wandered around Brooklyn for two weeks earlier this year.
dolk’s homage to warhol.
i’m pretty sure this if FAUXREEL, as he primarily works with photographs of people. if so, he only had this one piece in the whole exhibit. what a shame. i love his work.
i’m assuming this Indian/Pakistani scene is by Retna
and the one BANKSY at the exhibit
you can tell it’s a BANKSY by the lettering/font of the word “applause.”
hahah uss enterprise.
this week was Bike-To-Work Week, and as someone who regularly has bikegasms and cylejaculations, i was writing a bajillion essays and articles about it, many of which caused a serious amount of controversy.
the first was an essay i wrote about why i don’t wear bike helmets, even though i am afraid of being hurt in an accident, and it caused a bit of a clusterfuck (look at the comments!)
the second was an interview with james schwartz, who blogs at The Urban Country, who says that bike helmets actually scare people away from cycling altogether. he says he won’t wear a helmet until motorists and pedestrians do too. he was brilliant to interview, and if you look at the comments section, it really does raise some people’s ire.
klout has never been immune to controversy, their ways of scoring influence, communication, interaction, and engagement are very arbitrary, and many people feel like they should be on that list, or higher in the ranks. the last time i checked my klout, maybe six months ago, it was much higher, like 64 or 65, but your score fluctuates with interaction. i think it’s pretty cool that in the 2+ years i’ve been on twitter, i’ve managed to leverage my crazy-ass-rantings into something that people actually pay attention to and read and want to follow. it’s pretty fun. but it’s also not something to put too much stock into. the argument that these klout scores create elitism and “stars” amongst a democratic platform like twitter is justified and has merit.
that being said, i’m kinda chuffed to have made the cut. brag brag brag, sorry (not sorry) i promise i won’t let this go to my head (not a guarantee).
when i posted this news on my facebook, i said ” I don’t know how much stock I should put into this, but this is pretty shits n’ giggles:)“
then some asshole who i know peripherally decided to assert his holier-than-thou pedantic musings of my perceived hype-believin’. it’s fucking incredible how people go out of their way to make you feel inferior. here’s the exchange:
like seriously, what was the point of putting that remark on my wall? if you want to just sweep in and shit all over people’s parades, why don’t you find a bunch of emo hipsters with neurotic insecurities to shark-attack, because…
I CAN’T HEAR YOU OVER THE SOUND OF MY AWESOMENESS.
for all his “i’m not snarky” protestations, his facebook status said otherwise, which read “shut the fuck up about your Top 150 klout”. but what really made me laugh was what a fucking hypocrite he was- if you look at the comments on Zach’s original post, that same egomaniacal prima-donna who can only gain satisfaction from pointing out the shortcomings of others, was WHINING that he wasn’t included in the Top 150! i shit you not.
call me crazy, but not only does he have a chip on his shoulder, he wants to make sure other people feel shit about themselves for their recognition (albeit small & centralized recognition).
such a shame, ‘cos every time i had met with this guy in real life, he was totally cool, and seemed rather humble. once again, the internet allows for people’s true assholedom to emerge.
i went to Hip Hop Karaoke on friday, my first time there ever, although it’s a toronto institution. i can’t call myself a hip hop connoisseur, but luckily, it seemed like the crowd (save a few) had only a popular knowledge of hip hop, rather than an actual underground organic appreciation of it. no one sang any songs by artists i hadn’t heard before. and despite what 8-mile might tell you, the crowd was a varied demographic.
phil and i had been practicing our song for two weeks. TWO WEEKS PEOPLE, i was listening to it on a loop every morning while i dressed for work, on the commute, before i went to bed. i wanted to get this shit down. if you’re interested, this was the song we did. i did macy’s part (obvs), and phil did mos-def. that’s a lot of lyrics to learn.
the previous evening, phil and i had gone to a park and sang the song while people walked their dogs or ate on park benches. the evening had long fallen into the velvet-black of night, and we were still getting our tongues tied in the nooks and corners of it. some things came easy, other aspects were tentative and a bit slippery (am i still talking about the song?)
anyway, we went on around 1:30am when it was mostly the true hip hop fans left. stage-performance awareness set in, and we KILLED IT. we fucking murdered that song! last name WIN, first name EPIC! all the notes and lyrics and timing that we had fumbled over before just somehow stepped in line.
diggs, who recorded it all on video for us, told me the next day that he was really impressed with my performance. he said something along the lines of “i’ve seen a lot of people go up there, and i work in music so i know talent, and you were phenomenal” which of course made me feel super chuffed with myself (even though repeating it here makes me seem self-absorbed, which i refuse to admit to, although i seem to have no problem admitting it to you people).
frankly, i was more excited for phil. when we rehearsed, he had some timing problems and missed a few cues, but once we performed it on stage, he OWNED that shit. he was confident, he was enjoying it, he let go, and his performance was inspired. it was totally hot to watch.
when we finished the song, i started jumping up and down, giddy as a school girl, and we smashed into a hug.
hip hop karaoke, people.
you don’t know what you’re missing!
the next day, we cycled the humber valley bike path, which i’d never done before. i was so used to the don valley river path, or the lakeshore path, it never occurred to me to check this one out. it’s pretty amazing. some parts are paved, other parts are pretty rough-hewn and dilapidated, but the scenery along the river is like something out of a henry david thoreau poem. the sun burned like brimstone on our backs, forcing popsicle breaks.
sweat burned my lips into a smile.
when you’re having a punch-drunk time, other people from your past can sense it. earlier this week, a person i had barely dated text messaged me. when we were hanging a few months ago, he was sweet, warm, and most importantly, unpretentious. he took me out for my birthday, which was lovely.
that was followed by two weeks of radio silence. so i figured, okay, he’s gone off me for whatever reason, good thing it ended before anyone’s feelings got hurt.
then out of the blue, he texted me, gushing with compliments, and an invitation for another lunch date.
i was confused, but i agreed, figuring maybe the dude was just busy or not attuned to proper etiquette following a kiss (although, considering he’s 41 years old, he should know better).
so he takes me out for lunch again, and it’s all lovely and what not. but then at the end of the lunch, he says that classic guy cop-out.
“I just don’t have the time to give you the attention you deserve.”
ya, ‘cos i can’t read between those lines.
dude basically made it crystal clear that he wasn’t interested in dating me or anything further than that. so i wrote him off AGAIN.
Iwent on my NYC extravaganza, came back to begin work at my new position….and that was all two and a half months ago. i haven’t even given him a second thought since i wrote him off, because there was no point. that was a dead end.
on facebook, i noticed that he’s remounting his one-man cabaret again in a couple weeks.
and then this week, out of the blue, i get this text from him , “hey gorgeous lady! how the eff are ya? R u around? wanna have lunch next week?“
OH LUCKY ME.
am i allowed to roll over and thank my lucky stars now?! you’re not sending me mixed messages at all, i don’t find your behaviour confusing, and i don’t think you’re jerking me around either exclamation point.
forget the 10 weeks of radio silence, and the blatant i-don’t-want-to-date-you sugar-coating. i don’t have a life, or a job, or other men interested in me at all. watch how fast i drop everything just to be in your good graces again. oh, and let’s not forget that your show is just a few weeks away….i mean, i don’t assume AT ALL that you’re merely contacting me so i’ll either blog or tweet about your show, and try to get more bums in seats. oh no! thought never crossed my mind at all.
you had your chance. NO THANKS.
to quote amy winehouse, what kind of fuckery is this?
i found another sheppard fairey! this one is a different version of his andre the giant obey sticker, but i saw this one many times on the streets of alphabet city whilst in NYC, so i know it’s his. WIN.
last week i blogged about this deadboy poster i found on queen street near augusta. this morning i wake up to this email:
“Hello Christine, deadboy here…
Thank you for the very kind words about my work on Queen St. West! You understood exactly what I was trying to get across… And in answer to your questions, Yes and yes… But I won’t bore you with details. Love your blog!
I’m having my first solo show that runs from June 3-30.. I can send you more info if your interested.
Hope this letter finds you well…
YES I MOST DEFINITELY AM INTERESTED! how exciting!
check out his site people, the dude is wicked talented. when i get more info about his solo show, my munchkin readers will be the first to know.
also included in last week’s blog post was my discovery of a series of Mayor Rob “Fordzilla” Ford wheatpaste’s around town. the first one i found had the fat-godzilla mayor eating a streetcar (in reference to our mayor trying to destroy our sustainable public transit). the next one had him eating a spraypaint can (in reference to his war on street art and graffiti). earlier this week, i was walking through kensington market, and what do i find?
Fordzilla is eating a bike, in reference to his hatred of cyclists, and his assertion that if you’re a cyclist and you get hit by a car, it’s your own damn fault. i love how someone wrote on this Fordzilla “300 lbs of fun!!” because seriously, if rob ford actually got his morbidly obese ass on a bike once in a while, maybe he wouldn’t be a stones-throw from death. i can’t believe this fat, leotarded, mentally-stunted fucktard is our mayor. someone else drew in his hand the CN Tower. maybe the next Fordzilla wheatpaste i find will have him eating our tower as well?
FORDZILLA artist dude, you are my new hero. SERIOUSLY, i said this last week, but you need to contact me, you are fricken brilliant. let’s be friends!
don’t mind if i do.
adventures in photoshop. i think i’m gonna get the hang of this. oh ya, banner up top of this blog has been changed with some brilliance on my part. i’m becoming a total bitch.
last weekend i’m walking down queen west, i look up, and lo-and-behold it’s yet another pole sporting gregory alan elliot‘s turn of phrases and actual name attached to this street art.
i decided to take this as a cosmic sign from the universe. a while back, mr elliot tweeted me his phone number when he saw the cornucopia of his street art pictured on this blog, so after toeing this line (see what i did there+) of his in the sidewalk, i gave him a shout and we met up at Crafted by Te Aro on ossington.
and he was . . . well . . . he was unlike anyone i’ve ever met before, and that’s not a lie.
without saying how i felt about him, i’ll just tell you what he said:
“i’m NDP in practice, but i always vote conservative.”
make your own judgements.
since then, it’s been a strange but amazing week. after leaving mr elliot in the ossington area to give away plants that were meant for me to hands of other homes, i looked up at the back of the street lights and poles along queen west (something i trained my eye to do after two weeks in NYC and Brooklyn, never wanting to miss a single piece of street art), and what do i find?
just ignore me.
i don’t know who put up this really clever stencil on adelaide street near simcoe, but i drove by it first, turned the car around, wheels and hubcaps screeching like surgical tools along the pavement, pulled up in front, and took a bajillion shots.
EDIT!! just found out this is by fauxreel!
phil and i found this outside st george station.
there is nothing greater than citizens commenting on the city in which they live through art.
oh and rob-ford-bashing, ya gotta give the drugs-of-joy.
early this week i went to the morning press screening of director morgan spurlock’s latest doc POM The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, which premiered here as part of the Hot Docs film fest, which i am covering as media. i wrote a health-framed film review of the film, which you can read here, and then, the holiest of holies happened -> i got to interview DA MAN morgan spurlock himself on the red carpet of the premiere which you can read here! the pres rep only gave me 5 minutes (which was then diminished to 4 mins) with mr spurlock, but he was totally gracious and generous with his responses, and gave many great soundbites.
i’ve been a freelance writer for all of my adult life, and i’ve interviewed a shitload of celebrities and notable personalities, but it never really gets old. the moment you become blazé about how cool the job is, you should leave it. i love being media. i really do.
and now i fancy mr spurlock. just sayin’
some fuzzy blackberry-shots i took of mr spurlock on the red carpet as he inched his way toward me. here he’s being interviewed by CityTV.
now he’s being interviewed by CBC.
and NOW it’s the naked news, oddly, with clothes.
there’s shawn preece hall in the leather jacket. totally cool dude. he recognized me in the media line from twitter. i love it when that happens (which is rare. i have this complex where i believe no one actually knows my name or what i look like, so when people recognize me and actually know my name, it makes me a gonzo-blush)
anyway, watch the trailer for POM The Greatest Movie Ever Sold here:
i went to the Windsor Arms Hotel for high tea, in celebration of the Windsors tying the knot (see what i did there? anybody? Bueller?)
i wrote about it for The Gloss.
here’s some photos that didn’t make the final cut of the article
i won this book.
i’m not really bothering to read it. i mean, i got up early to watch them get married, but i’m over it now. fuck, even THEY are over it now, look.
tea and crumpets.
see those two little pots of jam sitting next to the butter dish in the centre?
ya, those went straight into my purse.
i’m like a sloppy scavenger. i spent so many years broke, eating nothing but scraps and morsels, and that mentality never leaves you.
you can take the poor grifter outta the girl, but you can’t take the girl outta the poor grifter.
when you’re not looking, i’m eating the leftovers on your plate.
all the lovely ladies wore sunday dresses and strappy pumps. i showed up in my work clothes and Chuck Taylors.
above i said i’m turning into a bitch. replace “bitch” with “fuckface.”
something new has popped up this week out of seeming nothingness. for once, i don’t particularly want to say anything about it.
i had a dream in the middle of the week that a hand was reach under the covers of my bed to choke me. when i woke up, i was still suffocating, wrestling with the hand which was independent of any body. this dark, strong, floating hand was trying to kill me while i lay bare.
death by duvet.
the night before i dreamed i was being told by the new girlfriend of an old boyfriend to leave the metropolis, he would never love me that way again.
no one ever loves the same way twice.
back off, duchess of cambridge, wills is MINE.
(Photos: Becca Lemire)