It is an unmitigated thrill to see “100 Years Ago” (or the hippie man in the long canoe) inspired by a scene from the horror film Friday the 13th (1980).The exhibition surveys the last dozen years and earlier romantic work is marked by compositions that are framed by sky meets water, forest meets sand, water meets land.The more recent paintings resonate with more deliberate architectural motifs — oversized speakers, ping pong tables, diving boards and hammocks.
In no time, I'm racing toward the nearly 50-year-old Habitat 67, Moshe Safdie's thesis at Mc Gill University turned model housing project for the World Fair Expo.
I had long admired the provocative photographs, ranging from Legos on crack and Byzantium anthill to beautifully ugly.
At this early hour, I was lucky to be able to roam undisturbed among the interior connecting plazas.
Image via Proliferations The relentless material singularity of 354 prefabricated concrete boxes cantilevering in multiple directions makes me dizzy with pleasure.
Outside, it's overcast, foreboding with rain, yet this Brutalist complex begins to emit a yellow glow between narrow window slits as residents awake and raise their shades to St. Photos by author With private terraces, multilevel units, gardens, and partially-covered walkways, Habitat 67 was a victim of its own success.
Safdie had hoped his diagram would become an opus to affordable housing and prefabrication, but its desirability transformed it into a very successful coop.Image via Byblos Petit Cafe 9am: Byblos Petit Cafe How can I not order the Oriental Omelette at Byblos Petit Cafe, an Iranian restaurant in the bohemian neighborhood of Plateau Mont-Royal? This popular breakfast spot delivers; perfectly scrambled eggs, sprinkled with cardamon, rose petals and crushed nuts, are paired with sweet bread embedded with traces of black sesame paste, all washed down with a bitter strong tea.Image via Safdie Architects 10am: Musee Des Beaux-Arts The impetus for this quick sojourn is Peter Doig: No Foreign Lands at the Musee Des Beaux-Arts, a recent exhibition that originated in Scotland and does not travel to the US.I enter through the Jean-Noël Desmarais Pavilion, another Safdie design, built in 1991 (above) and is fussy and aggressive.Doig's exhibition is thankfully presented in the oldest pavilion, a sturdy, neoclassical building from 1912.Photo by George Whiteside Spending a formative youth in Montreal, Doig is universally praised, yet his newsworthy, record-breaking auction prices have unfortunately muted the tender exquisiteness of his work.