The Artist’s Subject Goes Wandering

We’re in an age when every other person is a wannabe Walker Evans, and every single object and person in the city is a potential subject for self-reflective urban photography. (You know, the kind you sometimes see here.) Washington, DC artist Alexa Meade takes that situation to its logical extreme by turning her photo subjects […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Public Space, United States by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on The Artist’s Subject Goes Wandering , , , ,

A City on Screen and in Paint

Infernal Affairs, “I want my identity back” Enamel paint on canvas, 100cm(H) x 150cm(W), 2007 Hong Kong’s story is one best told on screen, through dihn ying, electric shadows. For decades, it was one of the world’s film capitals, and it was through film that Hong Kong projected itself onto the world with action films […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Film, Society and Culture by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on A City on Screen and in Paint , , , ,

The City Speaks

Mount Royal Avenue, Montreal Franck Chambrun seems to have rediscovered my photos. After painting several of them in 2007, he has done the same over the past few weeks, though with a distinct shift in style. Whereas his earlier paintings distilled the streetlife depicted in my photos to its bare essence of form and colour, […]

From Pixels Into Paint

The Mystery is Solved

Back in July I asked if anyone knew who was painting the manhole covers of Mile End. Slowly but surely, readers started offering some leads. One mentioned that she had heard the artist being interviewed on CBC Radio, but couldn’t remember which show; another suggested that it might have to do with an arts collective […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Canada by Christopher DeWolf 4 Comments , ,

Fine Art Street Art

This summer the National Gallery in London has brought the fine art to the public, by lining the streets of West End with reproductions of some of its paintings. The campaign is clearly a comment on street art culture — and of course a way to draw people to the gallery. It also raises interesting […]

Who is Painting the Manhole Covers?

I’m not just asking — I really want to know. Over the past month, somebody has painted dozens of manhole covers around Mile End, on Park Avenue, Bernard Street and St. Viateur Street. It’s quite a lovely endeavour, adding a bit of colour to the sidewalk while drawing attention to an overlooked but essential piece […]

Posted in: Canada, Public Space by Christopher DeWolf 11 Comments , ,

The City, Alive On Canvas

Montreal: The Old Port, oil on linen, 2007 I’d seen images of John Hartman’s work before. Great bird’s eye views of landscapes and cities in autumnal reds and blues. But it wasn’t until I stood before one of the canvasses from his new Cities series of paintings, that I fully experienced it. I was reminded […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Canada by Christopher DeWolf 2 Comments , ,

Purgatory on the C-Train

“No Name” by Jason Mark. Digital composite I first met Jason Mark when he came to live in my apartment. Actually, I should be more precise—I met him when he came to sublet my apartment. I was living in a cheap studio on Park Avenue near Fairmount, pleasantly appointed but also quite small and dark. […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Canada, Society and Culture, Transportation by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Purgatory on the C-Train , , ,

Metatourism in Alexandria

I stumbled upon these unloved old tourism paintings on a neglected building in the back streets of Alexandria, Egypt. Somehow they fed my enthusiasm about Egypt, yet newer promotional material would have had the opposite effect. How long does it take for marketing to become heritage?

Posted in: Africa and Middle East, Art and Design, Heritage and Preservation by Patrick Donovan Comments Off on Metatourism in Alexandria , , , ,

Portraits of a Neighbourhood

They stare at you—seven faces, their expressions ranging from jubilant to amused to vaguely perplexed. They are portraits of Café Olimpico’s employees, pasted above a bookstore at the corner of St. Viateur and Waverly Sts., right across the street from the well-known Mile End café (also known as Open Da Night). They first began to […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Canada by Christopher DeWolf 2 Comments , ,

The Art of Francisco Garcia

Mile Enders are used to street art, so it takes something special to catch their collective eye. Lately, people have been noticing the work of Francisco Garcia, a thirtysomething artists whose painted black-and-white posters have appeared above storefronts and on alley walls all around the Montreal neighbourhood. In an article published last year, Reading Montreal […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Canada by Christopher DeWolf 5 Comments , ,