Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

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Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby jarkko » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:30 pm

http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-n ... rescent-st

Giant mural commemorating Leonard Cohen coming to Crescent St.
René Bruemmer, Montreal Gazette

Published on: April 11, 2017 | Last Updated: April 11, 2017 5:46 PM EDT
Atowering mural commemorating Montreal singer, songwriter and poet Leonard Cohen will grace the side of a 20-storey building on Crescent St. just north of Ste-Catherine St. in downtown Montreal.

When completed in September, it will be among the largest murals in the city, visible from de Maisonneuve Blvd., Sherbrooke St. and the lookout on Mount Royal.

Mayor Denis Coderre confirmed the news in a tweet Tuesday morning.
“Between now and September, this magnificent wall in downtown Montreal will become a magnificent, 8,500-square-metre mural of Leonard Cohen,” he wrote.

Cohen died in November at the age of 82. 

The mural will be part of the “Montreal’s Great Artists” series of works commissioned by the non-profit group MU that promotes murals rooted in local communities, with funding from Montreal and Quebec’s Culture Department. Other artists honoured among the 14 murals created since 2o10 include pianists Oscar Peterson and Oliver Jones, author Dany Laferrière and recently, writer Mordecai Richler.

The mural will be part of the “Montreal’s Great Artists” series of works commissioned by the non-profit group MU that promotes murals rooted in local communities, with funding from Montreal and Quebec’s Culture Department. Other artists honoured among the 14 murals created since 2o10 include pianists Oscar Peterson and Oliver Jones, author Dany Laferrière and recently, writer Mordecai Richler.

The Cohen tribute will be done by Montreal artist Gene Pendon (a.k.a. Starship) who did the Laferrière and Peterson murals for MU, and American artist El Mec, known for his striking outdoor portraits, including some done in Montreal. The vision for the Cohen piece has not been finalized. When it is, the artists will present it to Cohen’s family members for approval before rendering it on the building.

The work will likely be done between late June and September, the period during which there is the least chance of rain, said MU artistic director Elizabeth-Ann Doyle. The city is expected to cover $200,000 of the cost, with the rest of the money coming from fundraising initiatives. 

“It will be so visible, and such an amazing statement,” Doyle said. “It will be a legacy that will be open to everybody, tourists and Montrealers. It will change the landscape of downtown Montreal.”

Another mural honouring Cohen is slated to be drawn this summer on the side of the nine-storey Cooper Building on St-Laurent Blvd. near Duluth Ave., as part of the local development committee’s popular annual Mural Festival. Some critics argue the Plateau-Mont-Royal project is more fitting, given it is where Cohen lived in his later years in Montreal.

Doyle said MU has been planning to honour Cohen in some way since 2013, hoping initially to produce a mural in 2014 to commemorate his 80th birthday, but could not find an urban canvas large enough in the Plateau. Their next plan was to produce a mural in 2017 to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the release of his first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen.

Cohen’s death spurred a new sense of urgency to hit their 2017 target. When the massive Crescent St. location came came available, MU seized the opportunity, Doyle said
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby lindyasimus » Sun Jun 11, 2017 4:14 pm

:D It begins.
http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-n ... t-festival

>>
If you happen to be ambling up the Main over the next few weeks and notice, near the corner of Napoléon St., a man with a paint brush on a lift many metres up in the air, don’t call the cops. He’s not a random tagger. His presence is legit. He is a man on a mission. A mural mission.

He is Montreal artist Kevin Ledo, and he will be creating a nine-storey-high likeness of Leonard Cohen on the south façade of the Cooper Building on St-Laurent Blvd. – just a few hundred metres from where the poet/troubadour had lived for so many years. The Cohen tribute, expected to be complete by the end of the month, is the centrepiece of the fifth Mural International Public Art Festival, which was launched Thursday and will feature works – mostly around the Main – of artists from seven countries.

Oh yeah, this Cohen mural is not to be confused with the city-sponsored, 20-storey creation on Crescent St., expected to be assembled in September. Along with granite stumps on Mount Royal and an urban rodeo in Old Montreal, the Crescent mural is one of the more nonsensical projects associated with this city’s billion-dollar 375th birthday bash.

As mentioned at the time of its announcement two months ago, Crescent has its merits — certainly with regard to city tourism — but it was not the serene Cohen’s kind of street. There is no more compelling evidence needed than this weekend’s Grand Prix action on Crescent, where F1 aficionados will be guzzling back bubbly and gazing lustily at the sleek sports cars lining the street.

No question that the Crescent mural will be masterfully handled by Montreal artist Gene Pendon – a.k.a. Starship – and American El Mec, but, seriously, the side of a 20-storey building would be more appropriate for a Batman beacon (if our dreamer Mayor Coderre had notions of making Montreal a twin metropolis with Gotham City), but not for an homage to Cohen, a most modest man.



The view from Kevin Ledo’s perch. DAVE SIDAWAY / MONTREAL GAZETTE
RELATED

Brownstein: Giant mural on Crescent St. an ill-fitting tribute to Leonard Cohen
Giant mural commemorating Leonard Cohen coming to Crescent St.
Perhaps even more troubling is that the Mural festival had been planning its tribute a few years before Cohen had passed away at 82 last November. In fact, fest execs had even applied for a city grant to create its mural before the Crescent mural was announced in April and learned after that announcement they would not receive any city funding.

“We were really quite surprised after hearing that a mural was going up on Crescent for the 375th anniversary,” says André Bathalon, Mural festival co-founder. “I have nothing but great respect for the artists commissioned to do the Crescent St. mural, but we feel that Crescent St. doesn’t make much sense for a Cohen mural, that St-Laurent Blvd. is a much more appropriate place for him.

“Plus, we had already submitted our mural plan to the city of Montreal, and we were concerned because the Crescent announcement was made prior to the decision of that city committee to give us a grant. But we decided that regardless of the outcome, we would find ways to make our mural happen.”

‘Fine art’

And so they did when they found out there was no city cash for them.

“I guess it made no sense to the city to finance two murals,” Bathalon says. “But the fact is that we had wished to have the Cohen mural done years before, while he was alive in 2014, and it was with great sadness that because of circumstances we weren’t able to do it then.

“In those early days of our festival, people would often think of us as taggers and random graffiti artists committing acts of vandalism. But we were later able to show – as have many taggers and graffiti artists – that wasn’t the case, that fine art was being created.”

Bathalon credits an array of diverse local groups for getting behind the Cohen mural and helping to bring it to fruition. Among the Mural fest’s partners in the Cohen project are the Société de développement du boulevard Saint-Laurent and Federation CJA, as well as the owners of the Cooper Building, Moishe’s and parking lots in the area.

From the ’hood

“It’s thanks to the involvement of these different groups that we are finally able to put this together in an area that meant so much to Cohen and in an area where so many knew him and saw him on a daily basis. It really shows that when a project is so relevant to so many that people from all over will come together.”

Bathalon points out that mural artist Ledo is from the ’hood, having grown up not far from Cohen’s flat facing Parc du Portugal: “By getting him to do this in Cohen’s neighbourhood, which is also Ledo’s Portuguese neighbourhood, we feel that we have been able to complete this circle.”

Ledo, for his part, is flattered to have been selected for the project.

“I feel like this mural is so important, and it’s such an honour for me to be painting Leonard Cohen. My goal is to capture the essence of this spectacular artist,” says Ledo, who has won praise for previous mural portraits of, among many others, Janine Sutto and David Suzuki.

Bathalon hopes that the festival marks just the beginning of a series of local homages for Cohen, one of the too-few homegrown artists able to cross the linguistic divide in Montreal, and able to resonate with all cultural communities here and around the world.

“There really can’t be too many tributes for this awesome man. And, hopefully, even the Crescent mural, when it is finished, will at least infuse some cultural knowledge into the brains of F1 enthusiasts.”

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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby MarieM » Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:28 am

Tweeted by 24Montreal jounalist Laurence Houde-Roy @lauhouderoy, model of the mural in honour of Leonard Cohen, which will be created by the organization MU au 1420, on Crescent Street in Montreal.

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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby jarkko » Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:19 pm

From our friend Chengyi Chan in Montreal:
On page 14 of the free French newspaper "24Here's Montreal," June 13, the project of making a mural of Leonard Cohen in honor of him is disclosed. According to the report, the mural will be based on a photo provided by Cohen's family and will be located on 1420 Crescent street in downtown Montreal and will be visible from the Mont Royal hill. The project will cost 300,000 Canadian dollars. And the city government will subsidize 200,000 dollars on the project.
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby FOXWOOD » Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:55 am

"There’s a funny wrinkle to this year’s Mural Festival in Montreal. The event, currently in its fifth year and running June 8-18, features a gaggle of street artists enlisted to ‘democratize urban art.’

One artist achieving this objective in spades is Kevin Ledo. His Leonard Cohen art, currently in progress, takes up the equivalent of nine storeys on the side of the Cooper Building, on St-Laurent. Blvd. This fall, the city of Montreal will erect a much bigger 20-storey Cohen mural at 1420 Crescent Street. The festival had been planning its project for several years and was essentially blindsided by the city project, to be created by the well-respected Gene Pendon.
"

http://www.adweek.com/creativity/leonar ... -festival/
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby B4real » Thu Jun 15, 2017 3:06 pm

And here's the latest on the mural on the Cooper Building on St. Laurent (between Napoleon and Rachel)

David Rudin, Montreal Gazette
Published on: June 15, 2017 | Last Updated: June 15, 2017 6:39 AM EDT
Fans of Montreal’s late great Leonard Cohen are not content to sit and wait for his latest story to unfold, documenting the creation of a mural of his likeness almost stroke for stroke. 

The legendary musician’s likeness is being constructed just off the Main in a nine-storey mural, the work of Kevin Ledo, as part of the fifth Mural International Public Art Festival. 

As it goes up, it appears Ledo’s mural is already winning over Montrealers in a way the city’s other tribute to Cohen, on Crescent St., has not.
Read the rest and some more images here: http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-n ... -by-stroke

Image
Kevin Ledo works on his massive Leonard Cohen mural as part of the Mural Fest in Montreal on Wednesday June 14, 2017. (Allen McInnis / MONTREAL GAZETTE)

I wonder what Leonard would think of all this ....
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby vickiwoodyard » Thu Jun 15, 2017 7:42 pm

He wouldn't think much of himself as a giant image, but he knew how deeply our love for him goes and in that sense would probably smile....
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby B4real » Fri Jun 16, 2017 2:37 am

Ah Vicki, seems smiling is contagious because your words and that thought made me smile too :)

Here's some more info and images regarding the above mural on the Cooper Building, St Laurent Blvd -
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsclXhxjbas
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby jarkko » Fri Jun 16, 2017 3:07 pm

The same Breakfast Television Montreal report also here:
http://www.btmontreal.ca/videos/giant-l ... e-plateau/
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby chengyichan » Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:15 pm

The newspaper "Le Devoir" has the Cohen mural on their front page today (June 16, 2017) with the headline "Cohen, Plus Grand que Nature" (Cohen, Larger than Life). The photo of the mural was already posted here. But this is an updated version, which reveals the blue ribbon (?). It is a flying necktie or what? Also, hopefully they will put a suit on Cohen. Isn't it said somewhere that Cohen was born with a suit on?

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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby chengyichan » Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:15 pm

I forgot to attach the photo of in-progress Cohen mural from the June 16 edition of Le Devoir. Here it is:Image
download/file.php?mode=view&id=19091

On the second thoughts, the blue ribbon-like thing is too big as a tie. Could it be a scarf?

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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby LisaLCFan » Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:57 pm

chengyichan wrote:...On the second thoughts, the blue ribbon-like thing is too big as a tie. Could it be a scarf?
Hi Chengyi,

Please see the attached CBC website story, which explains the image as follows:

Ledo [the artist who painted it] said the mural is inspired by Cohen's later work, especially his last two albums. "They had this dark kind of feel that I really liked, and yet there was always this light around it," Ledo said. "The purple lines around Cohen's face", Ledo said, are "symbolic of the energy surrounding him and his music in that time."

Here is the ink:
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/ ... -1.4163028

Cheers!
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby LisaLCFan » Fri Jun 16, 2017 11:03 pm

With regards to Cohen's expression in the mural, am I the only one who thinks that he looks rather grumpy, with that frown and furrowed brow, as if he is disapproving of something (such as a giant image of him being painted on a wall!)?

Marvellous likeness, of course, but odd choice of expression. :?
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby Geoffrey » Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:23 am

LisaLCFan wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 11:03 pm
With regards to Cohen's expression in the mural, am I the only one who thinks that he looks rather grumpy . . .
no, i don't think you're the only one. would have been nice to see a portrait with a less grumpy expression, but if this one causes discussion i suppose that is not necessarily a negative thing ;-)
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Re: Giant mural in Montreal commemorating Leonard Cohen

Postby B4real » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:22 am

Lisa and Geoffrey,
I agree but It's early days yet and approx another two weeks before it's finished so it's possible LC's expression isn't finalised yet .... maybe a slight upward tweaking of the lips (at least one corner) could make all the difference :razz:
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