Friday, September 9, 2011

You down with OPP? Gallery and Grand Opening of Montreal's newest hot spot for art, clothing, and specialty accessories

First, let me apologize to everyone for the slack in updates on the blog. Life has been keeping my busy over the last month and it's been difficult to catch up. The OPP Galerie and Boutique opening, Under Pressure, my photo expo ("Benching") for the Can You Rock pre-party, then the event itself over the weekend, the streets, life, work, and everything else have been piling up around me. Now that the storm of activity has passed I got some time to catch up.

So without further ado I am proud to post my pics and follow up from the grand opening of the OPP Galerie & Boutique on 2110 Saint Laurent Blvd Montreal, just below Sherbrooke Street and just up from St. Laurent metro. Firstly, this was easily one of the best and brightest of openings and gallery shows that I have attended this year. It's a fantastic space and a great location. The shop boasts an impressive floor space with plenty of walls to show off some premier pieces by many talented artists from Montreal and abroad. The shop is also a boutique space for some locally designed clothing and accessories for those looking to get the latest in street wear.

The opening event was definitely a success in my opinion. A packed house, live music, party treats by Lee's Cupcakes, and other assorted snacks were being floated about by hostesses, lots of positive comments on the art pieces, and generally a solid vibe. The place really feels more like a museum when you step out of the main shop area and into the adjoining gallery space. There are a few nooks and crannies through out this mini labyrinth showing off some interesting pieces (like the Crusty and bike canvasses) that made walking the floor space interesting and fun.

The pieces were for the most part pretty engaging too. I personally enjoyed the Axle/Void installation along one of the main walls. Lots of little interesting bits on this wall. From what I gathered he had interviewed someone from South America about their life, having them choose a selection of photographs that reflected aspects of daily life or meaningful moments. From this he designed and painted an installation mixed with his own socio-political messages. The large hangman piece (and there was a smaller one too) were definite attention grabbers that left you uneasy and a bit squimesh but you have to appreciate the artistic depiction and manner of putting issues like the public hanging of accused homosexuals to the forefront of an exhibit like this. Ballsy.

And more than that OPP has a rich mixture both in the art hanging on the walls and the clothes hanging on the racks, and there are accessories to boot. Lots of local talents are showcased here for your viewing or wearing pleasure. The accessories are like mini installations in on themselves too, the cases are trendy, fun, smart, and colorful. You can easily lose some time just walking about the shop checking out all this stuff. Artistically there is a wide variety of styles and influences on the wall, none of which I have a real understanding or appreciation for, but you get that feel when you move from piece to piece and they come at you in very different ways. Some are textured and rough, while others are smooth and glassed up, color jams, characters, portraits, objects, scenes, and stories.

Regardless of your taste in fashion, design, or art do yourself a favor and pass through this spot. The art should still be up for viewing for the most part till the end of the month. The collective and eclectic group that runs it are an awesome crowd who will never disappoint. Don't miss out, drop in and check it whenever you're in the area as new stuff is introduced on a regular basis. I can only imagine that future shows will be just as interesting and successful.

Here are some links to the OPP site, facebook page, and a couple of the artists and designers currently on the floor.
And check out this posting of the show and gallery, a very solid post with some nice and sexy pics:

Under Pressure, Can You Rock, and a whole more to come soon as I get increasingly more on track in teh coming weeks.

Stay posted.