While the most common bricks in Montreal are of a warm red, there are also a great many made of a terra cotta mixture. When they are dry, they show only subtle variations in colour, but after the rain has touched them they explode with variations. This wall reminded me of a cherished story my amazing Dad would tell me of his childhood in Montreal. He would borrow an old bucket from home, fill it with water, and spend hours painting the bricks with water, watching them as they dried and then painting them again. It wasn’t until I started looking at these walls that I fully understood what he was seeing and why he might have enjoyed it so much: he was bringing out colours! Oh, how I’d love to be able to see what his water brushes painted! Thank you, Dad for inspiring me to be an artist!

(Circa October 2019) – Back in the fall of 2019, when I was still attending classes in person and working in an office, as opposed to my Covid-free basement office, I started walking around the downtown core and noticing the subtle and beautiful effects of age on the walls of my city, Montreal. This coincided with my decision to read several books on Wabi-Sabi aesthetics and my continuously growing love for that aesthetic. The idea that beauty exists in imperfections is only the beginning of it. Time and the environment (pollution, weather, effects of humans, etc…) carve away at our attempts at perfections and paint their often simple touches to the urban landscape. These touches deliver more beauty than we normally notice, so I stopped to notice them and guess what I found? I looked at walls in the dry, bright sunshine, in the cloudy rain, and the conditions in between them. The best days to capture the effects seem to be shortly after the rain has fallen and the sun is peaking through the clouds.

Life got busier and busier and before I knew it, Covid made it less interesting to move around as much. Let’s be honest, there’s something very satisfying in taking pictures of walls when other people are around. I love the looks of curiosity and confusion I get when they see me standing around and taking pictures of what must seem like random walls.

Well, it’s Spring, Covid-restrictions are loosening a little and I’ll be heading out for more shooting soon (I hope).

I would love all your feelings, impressions, and observations one these images, so please share them here or on my blog The New Renaissance Mindset

Prints & more available at Arts MPerron @ https://1-mario-perron.pixels.com


3 thoughts on “Montreal Walls Project – Four – Uncovering Natural Variations (Thank you, Dad!)

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