BRUTALISM & MONTREAL

 

Inexorable flow of concrete, the invasiveness of steel, the softness of coloured lighting is taken as nothing more than what it is, not metaphor, not some ominous portent, and simply as another material harnessed for its properties of strength and durability, and rendered with honesty of design that harkens to modularity of structures and the simplicity of geometric lines.

From the grid of stations that constitute the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) system, three stops were of particular fascination to the TRiiNG Collective.

  • Acadie
  • Villa Maria
  • St. Henri

ACADIE

The architects Pierre Mercier, Pierre Boyer-Mercier, and Patrice Poirier used bold colours such as blue, hot pink, black, and slate grey to soften the Brutalist weightiness of their work.

The tall clock and bench - Lieu de rendez-vous by Météore Design and the seating by sculptor Michel Morelli, is an island of solitude within the madness of daily commutes

VILLA MARIA

Designed by the architect André Léonard and opened in 1981, the station is on the Orange Line of the STM. In the borough of Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce in Montreal, Villa Maria is where the Design Studio of TRiiNG is located.

ST. HENRI

Julien Hébert & Jean-Louis Lalonde are the architects. The mural by Hébert in the mezzanine, entitled Bonheur d'occasion, features the title of the famous book by Gabrielle Roy. Considered as one of the most important Francophone writers in Canadian history, a quotation by her is on the Canadian $ 20 bill - “Could we ever know each other in the slightest without the arts?”

These weighty concrete structures rib the STM and are reminiscent of writings of JG Ballard (High-Rise, Crash) and Jean-Patrick Manchette (The Prone Gunman).

We do recommend a piece by Sinh Bisen - Sex X Technology. And yes, we believe it equals the Future. For those of you who haven’t experienced Ballard, go read Sinh first.