Quebec City Tour: Limoilou

Poster advertising keytar legend “Gils” at Limoilou’s Pub Chez Jean The image above summarizes my perception of Limoilou: a neighbourhood locked in time where mullets, keytars, and bikers rule. I don’t go there often, and when I do I always experience culture shock (but I suppose it also makes me laugh). Largely planned and built […]

Posted in: Canada, Society and Culture by Patrick Donovan Comments Off on Quebec City Tour: Limoilou ,

Riding the Rails in 1941

Considering the mayor’s enthusiasm over bringing back tramways to Montreal—the city’s new transport plan, unveiled yesterday, proposed three new lines that will be built over the next several years—I thought it would be fun to take a look at this old tramway route map from 1941. What I find most fascinating is the way it’s […]

Posted in: Canada, Maps, Transportation by Christopher DeWolf 1 Comment ,

All the Fruit a Market Bears

Notre Dame St., Lachine’s beleagured main street The Lachine Market comes as a surprise: a small, pleasant outpost near the end of the Lachine Canal. For years, like the neighbourhood around it, the market suffered from neglect. Now, with a new format meant to better serve its community, it hopes to become a central part […]

Kowloon Sunset

Another summer day comes to a close amidst the gentle patter of air conditioner rain…

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Inside Montreal’s “Grand Urban Gesture”

A couple of weeks ago, Midnight Poutine reported that Montreal’s new central library, the Grande Bibliothèque, has won first place in the 2007 Library Building Awards. “At once urban, human scaled, and extraordinarily open, the building succeeds by its exquisite use of materials and detailing both inside and outside,” wrote the jury. “There is a […]

Posted in: Architecture, Canada, Interior Space by Christopher DeWolf 2 Comments ,

Window Shopping

Venice Genoa

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Balcony Life in Rome

In the sweltering Roman summer, balconies aren’t used so much to escape the heat—that’s what air conditioning and metal shutters are for—as they are to linger over a cigarette, spying on the neighbours. Or maybe just to hang the laundry.

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Swinging Into the Neon Dusk

Helen’s Children’s Wear, Burnaby. Photo by M.J. Milloy Vancouver used to be one of the world’s capitals of neon before its dour city fathers ruined the fun in the 1960s and the signs were banned. A handful of gems managed to survive, though, and over the past decade, Vancouver’s neon heritage has become increasingly appreciated. […]

Posted in: Canada, Heritage and Preservation by Christopher DeWolf 1 Comment , ,

Passing Under the Tracks

Railroad viaducts make for a distinct kind of underpass: not too long but exceptionally dank and dreary, made ominous by the rattle of trains passing overhead. In downtown Montreal, pedestrians passing under the Windsor Station CPR tracks are subjected to all manners of mysterious liquids and pigeon poop. The tracks that feed Rome’s Trastevere Station […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Europe by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Passing Under the Tracks , , ,

The Urban Thread

[youtube]nSCOnuV_QmM[/youtube] Last month I wrote about Montreal video artist Thien Vu Dang, known as VJ Pillow, and his work for the Minute Moments series of one-minute videos. Yasuko Tadokoro is Pillow’s frequent collaborator but she is also a talented videographer in her own right: consider “Le fil rouge,” a Minute Moment video that muses on […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Video by Christopher DeWolf 1 Comment

Sex and the City

Posters for escorts in Hong Kong It’s not hard to buy sex. You need only turn to the back pages of your local alt-weekly, where escort agencies advertise women like Natasha, whose age (twenty), height (5’8”), measurements (36B-24-34), weight (120 pounds) and ethnicity (French-Canadian) are listed beneath a photo of a topless woman, legs spread, […]

Posted in: Canada, History, Politics, Society and Culture by Christopher DeWolf 1 Comment

Class Trip to the Spanish Steps

As a hazy dusk descended over Rome, we caught the tram into the old city and wandered past all of the historic sights whose names had filtered into our imaginations through generations of pop culture: the Tiber River, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain. All of them, predictably, were packed by tourists, each one trying desparate […]

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Caution: Satan at Work

Posted in: Art and Design, Canada by Patrick Donovan Comments Off on Caution: Satan at Work , ,

On the SkyTrain

Scenes from the SkyTrain, Vancouver’s metro system

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