“Based on a true story.
Mural Norte-Sur (North-South) was the first major project supported by Greening Duluth. We were approached by two local muralists, Carlos Ortiz (Guko) and Elisa Monreal (Shalak), who had received funding from Vivacité, a cultural vitality project offered by the City of Montreal. They wanted to utilize the large (3 story) blank wall facing on to the House of Friendship to create a major mural exploring themes of justice, culture, nature, migration, exchange, art and indigeneity. The mural provided the opportunity to initiate a dialogue with Apollo and Kula Stamoulos, owners of Buanderie Duluth and the building to which the wall belonged. Working together over 2 months, Carlos and Elisa returned again and again with evolving sketches, colours and images for consultation of the partners. In July, the painting began, and was completed over a period of 7 weeks. It was documented through photography and photo-montage by Alain Thibault (Indiefotog), a long time collaborator of the artists.
To date, Norte-Sur stands amongst the most significant mural works in Canada, for both its depth of content and quality of workmanship. Thousands of visitors to Montreal have stopped to admire Mural Norte-Sur and reflect on its meaning and message, and the mural has been featured in numerous blogs and magazines and was used as the cover image for “Diversity and Multiculturalism” by Dr.Shirley Steingberg, Mcgill University. It has also been featured in “Mural Art, Vol.2; Murals on big public surfaces around the world from Graffiti to tromp l’oeuil”, a book by Kiriakos Losifidis. For the House of Friendship, a place where thousands of immigrants and refugees have first found their feet in Montreal, the mural’s message of hope, justice and cultural celebration resonates deeply.
Shalak’s work can be found on her website at http://www.shalakattack.com.
Guko’s work can be found on his website at http://artguko.blogspot.ca.
Indiefotog’s work can be found on his website at http://indiefotog.blogspot.ca.
All the artists welcome communication!