How did this project come about?
Art by Dalkhafin | Image courtesy of Colin Riendeau
The wall is one side of the 13-storey building “Habitations De Mentana”, low-cost housing managed by the Office municipal d’habitation de Montréal (OMHM).
“Some see it as an ugly slab, others call it home. I see it as a canvas: a future work of art that can motivate, inspire and bring together a diverse neighborhood, ”said Riendeau. “I want people to look up and be proud of where they live.”
Riendeau said he had arranged a meeting with the OMHM in January 2020 and that they were “really interested” in the idea of putting up a painted mural – but the pandemic then happened.
This posed a “huge problem,” said Riendeau, as the OMHM would normally ask him to conduct a door-to-door investigation “to ensure that the community is involved and that residents have a say in what. is happening in the building “.
He used his background in the arts to put together a team, and they got creative in finding and executing an innovative solution.
How will this project work?
Thanks to funding from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, the collective transforms the concepts of several muralists into animated digital murals that will be projected on the building.
The projections serve as a user-friendly way for COVID-19 to show community members samples of potential wall designs. Once residents see all of the options – likely at a larger-scale month-long event in the spring of 2022 – they’ll pick one that will be painted and permanent.
Riendeau said they aim to complete the permanent mural as part of next year’s MURAL Festival or the Montreal International Cartographic Projection Festival.
Art by Dead | Image courtesy of Colin Riendeau
Three of these digital murals set to be tested this weekend: one by a Montreal artist Dalkhafin (Delphine Dussoubs), one of the Montreal artist Dead and one by a Vancouver artist Bird fingers (Paige Bowman).
They will be projected from the rooftops of neighboring buildings as well as from Riendeau’s infamous window, which currently has a 100-pound projector he described as a “1970s microwave” propped up in front of it.
If you walk past the “Habitations De Mentana” building after dark, you should be able to get a first glimpse of what to expect.
All the animation is not yet ready. But the idea is that, eventually, depth sensors will be positioned to create an “interactive zone”, so when pedestrians pass or stop in front of the wall, their movement triggers the animation.
“It will create a back and forth of interactivity where if you have two people crossing each other, they can stop and talk to each other,” Riendeau said. “That’s the whole point of this – to create a point of conversation […] which will also bring people together. “
It’s unusual to see a multimedia installation that uses this caliber of tools and technology outside of the Quartier des spectacles, the collective told MTL Blog, which is why Guivarc’h called it a “nice surprise.” for this district ”.
“Even though we use cutting-edge tools and technologies, it is about […] people who live here and bring them something colorful and fun, ”added Daoust.
Although there are still a few months until the main event, Riendeau said he wanted this weekend’s test to “light up the night sky”, offering the community as well as passers-by “hope. “And” joy “during a” dark time of the year. “
“It’s our Christmas present for the neighborhood,” Riendeau told Blog MTL.
The Saint-André wall project (Le Mur de Saint-André)
Art by @Birdfingersss | Image courtesy of Colin Riendeau
Price: Free verification!
When: The test will take place on Saturday December 18 and Sunday December 19, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. or 11 p.m. approximately. Plans are underway for a larger one-month interactive installation exhibit in spring 2022, ultimately culminating in a permanent mural.
Address: Rue Saint-André between avenue Duluth Est and rue Rachel Est on the wall of the building “The Dwellings of Mentana, Plateau-Mont-Royal, Montreal, QC
Why you need to go: Watch a Montreal horror transform into a vibrant, colorful work of art. This innovative wall project is designed to light up the night sky, bringing hope, joy and inspiration to passers-by while livening up a local neighborhood.
This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.