COVID-19 cases are on the rise, restrictions are in place and the government's asking Quebecers to reduce social contacts. But if there's one thing the virus hasn't taken from us, it's our ability to walk around our favourite Montreal neighbourhoods, discovering and admiring beautiful murals.
Being a world-renowned UNESCO City of Design, there's no shortage of multidisciplinary art that you can observe for free in this city.
Montreal is known for its plethora of artists, and Montrealers are lucky enough to live in a place where street art is celebrated — and that's especially true in the Plateau.
If your Instagram content has gotten dry during the lockdown, these colourful murals can liven up your feed.
Otherwise, you can simply enjoy some fresh air and take in some of the city's brightest, boldest, most inspiring displays of public local art and culture.
Can you find all nine of them? Trying to spot them all will guide you on an epic walk through the Plateau. Have fun!
Leonard Cohen TributeJF Galipeau
Address: 3991, boulevard Saint-Laurent
Artist: Kevin Ledo
Why You Need To Go: The city boasts several tributes to one of the world's most famous Montreal natives, Leonard Cohen, via street art. But Ledo's is arguably the most colourful, painted on the side of a nine-storey building.
Looking BackIndrid__Cold | Flickr
Address: 3527, boulevard Saint-Laurent
Why You Need To Go: This pop-art-inspired, partial portrait of a female shedding a single tear feels like she's staring straight into your soul, sharing the burden of your pandemic struggles.
Address: 3953, boulevard Saint-Laurent
Why You Need To Go: This gorgeous floral mural was recently painted on the side of the Bijoutrie Rosas de Portugal building. It's located right next to the Leonard Cohen mural on Saint-Laurent.
The Seven Deadly SinsMarie Chalifour | Flickr
Address: 3685, boulevard Saint-Laurent
Artist: Buff Monster
Why You Need To Go: You've probably spotted this colourful array of monstrous creatures near Dirty Dogs on Saint-Laurent. Slimy forms and bulging eyeballs make them the perfect backdrop for spooky season.
Sorry Is Not Enough@muralfestival | Instagram
Address: A parking lot on Saint-Laurent Boulevard, just south of Rue Prince Arthur.
Why You Need To Go: This politically-charged mural is a pop-art take on the Black Lives Matter movement. It's done entirely with aerosol paint on a black backdrop. On his Instagram page, the artist used a photo of this mural to send a message: "Keep fighting for what is right, fair and human."
Belgian MoonJF Galipeau
Address: 3527, boulevard Saint-Laurent
Artist: Marc-Olivier Lamothe
Why You Need To Go: Chances are you've seen this Montreal-based artist's work across the city — whether in Quartier Dix-30 or on Montreal's streets. Belgian Moon beer commissioned the vast, multicoloured mural to match its limited-edition beer packaging.
All Night Peep Showmtl.streetart | Instagram
Address: Corner of Rue Marie-Anne and Rue Saint-Dominique
Artist: Zïlon Lazer
Why You Need To Go: This iconic and chaotic work of art on a now-closed depanneur in the Plateau Mont-Royal gives you so much to dissect that you might get dizzy trying to take it all in. But doesn't it feel good to feel something?
Light & FreeJF Galipeau
Address: 256, rue Sherbrooke O.
Artist: Burnt Toast
Why You Need To Go: Burnt Toast's bubblegum-like depiction of three squiggly people is sure to put a smile on any onlooker's face. The recently painted mural was sponsored by Light and Free yogurt, which posted about its meaning: "Being seen and being recognized for who you are is an integral part of feeling good about yourself. So let your uniqueness shine."
Address: A parking lot on Rue Saint-Dominique, near Boulevard Saint-Laurent
Artist: Ron English
Why You Need To Go: If you know Ron English, you know the signature creepy smile that adorns his pieces. You can find this eerie yet bold-coloured modified portrait of the Mona Lisa in a parking lot in the Plateau. There are only a few days left of spooky season, and this mural embodies it almost too well.