Waxhead

It’s almost impossible to find a back alley between Avenue du Parc and St-Denis without something painted or drawn by Waxhead on some wall or door. Big colourful murals are interspersed with smaller, quickly drawn figures. But his work is not all underground, as a good amount of commissioned art can also be found on storefronts and walls of Plateau/Mile End businesses.

It’s also almost impossible to walk the length of a street between Parc and St-Denis without finding at least a handful or two of stickers with the art of Waxhead on them. Two different types of stickers can actually be found. The stickers of the first type usually are post office forms or “Hello My Name Is” labels with small variations of his usual characters drawn or painted over them. Some are in black and white, others are in colour. Because they are not mass-printed, each one encountered is a unique creation.

The stickers of the other type appear to be printed but this doesn’t mean that they are less original, to the contrary. They actually are my favorites. They show small reproductions of old black and white or sepia-toned photos on which Waxhead re-did in his own recognizable style the head of one or some characters. In some cases he has added new colourful characters to the ones already found in the black and white original. This fusion (or should I say clash) of very stiff old-fashioned photos with the crazy world of Waxhead is never boring, sometimes funny or freaky and always makes me wish for a larger version.

This Main MTL interview from 2013 lets us inside Waxhead’s head. A bit of Waxhead at work can see seen in this trailer for a film on the Montreat street art scene that never came to be. You can also see a lot of Waxhead’s art on waxheadart.com as well as on his Instagram and Flickr pages.

Il est impossible de trouver entre l’avenue du Parc et la rue St-Denis une ruelle sans oeuvre peinte ou dessinée par Waxhead. Les grandes murales très colorées y alternent avec des dessins effectués rapido. Son art n’est pas seulement underground, puisque des pièces commandées se trouvent aussi sur les devantures et murs latéraux de plus d’un commerce du Plateau ou de Mile End.

Il est aussi impossible de marcher le long d’une des artères du même quartier sans y trouver un autocollant créé par Waxhead. L’artiste produit en fait deux types d’autocollant. Ceux du premier type sont habituellement des formulaires postaux ou des étiquettes “Bonjour mon nom est” sur lesquels a été dessiné ou peint un des personnages typiques de Waxhead. Certains sont en noir et blanc tandis que d’autres sont en couleur. Puisque ceux-ci n’ont pas été imprimés commercialement, chacun est unique.

Les stickers du second type sont imprimés, mais ceci ne veut pas nécessairement dire qu’ils sont moins originaux, bien au contraire. Ce sont en fait mes préférés. On y voit d’anciennes photos en noir et blanc ou dans des tons sepia sur lesquelles les têtes des personnages ont été repeintes par Waxhead, dans son style inimitable et coloré. Dans certains cas l’artiste a même ajouté de ses personnages colorés à ceux qui figurent déjà dans la photo. Cette rencontre entre le style rigide des photos anciennes et le monde coloré de Waxhead n’est jamais ennuyante. Le résultat est en fait souvent drôle ou déconcertant. En fait à chaque fois que je découvre un nouveau sticker de ce type, ma seule déception est de ne pas être en mesure de voir l’image en plus grand.

Pour un peu d’information sur les origines de Waxhead et sur sa vision du street art, vous êtes invités à visionner cette entrevue pour Main MTL faite en 2013. On peut aussi voir un peu de Waxhead en action dans cette bande-annonce pour un documentaire sur la scène montréalaise du street art qui n’a jamais vu le jour. En plus de la galerie d’images ci-dessous, il est possible de voir une très grande quantité d’oeuvres de Waxhead sur waxheadart.com ainsi que sur ses pages Instagram et Flickr.

murals / murales

Murals in this section are shown in approximate reverse chronological order, so the most recent are at the top.

Les murales de cette section de la galerie sont présentées en ordre chronologique inverse approximatif, de la plus récente à la plus vieille que j’ai eu la chance de photographier.

For the 2018 Canettes de Ruelle production in a Rosemont alley.

Collaboration with Cryote in Hochelaga.

A little extra next to the above garage door.

Waxhead’s contribution to the 2018 edition of Mural Festival. Includes letters by Ekes in the bottom right corner. See below for two close-ups.

Close-up of the St-Laurent side of Waxhead’s contribution to the 2018 edition of Mural Festival.

Close-up of the Marie-Anne side of Waxhead’s contribution to the 2018 edition of Mural Festival. Includes letters by Ekes in the bottom right corner.

Cryote (left) and Waxhead (right) in Plateau End.

Cryote and Waxhead mural in a Rosemont alley, part of the Gatos Callejeros production.

SBU One (left) and Waxhead (right) in a Rosemont alley.

Cryote and Waxhead redid the front of Chez José in early summer 2016.

Cryote and Waxhead were also commissioned to do the front of this St-Laurent pet shop at about the same time as above.

Mural in alley behind St-Laurent featuring Waxhead (left), Ether TFB (centre) and Turtle Caps (right).

Mural in the Cité du Multimédia.

Mural by Waxhead, Cryote and perhaps other members of the then Wzrds Gng in a Mile End alley.

En Masse‘s contribution to the 2013 edition of Mural Festival features Waxhead (head on the left) alongside Dan Buller (tennis player), Five Eight (central letters), Scaner (top letters), Beeforeo (below Five) and Nixon (bottom, top and far right). Photo © Infant Wisdom.

alley pieces / ruelles

Pieces in this section are shown in approximate reverse chronological order, so the most recent are at the top.

Les pièces de cette section de la galerie sont présentées en ordre chronologique inverse approximatif, de la plus récente à la plus vieille que j’ai eu la chance de photographier.

In a Plateau alley.

Cryote (left and bottom right) and Waxhead (door, around door and top right) from a tribute prod to Akira in a Plateau alley.

Waxhead (door, bottom right) and Cryote (top right) in a Mile End alley.

Waxhead (middle, foliage and cat), Tiburon (2 heads) and Cryote (above) in Plateau End.

Cryote (central figures) and Waxhead (leafy figures and door) in a Mile End alley.

In a Mile End alley.

Cryote (left) and Waxhead (right) in Mile End.

In the alley between St-Laurent and Clark. Also visible in the top left corner of the photo is a wood-up by Loks.

Same spot as above, but featuring a new piece after the previous one had been vandalised.

2015 group ‘autoportrait’ by:
top row: Shalak from Clandestinos, Jason Botkin, Kevin Ledo, Chris Dyer, Bruno Smoky from Clandestinos
bottom row: Lovebot, Turtle Caps, Linsey Levendall, Marina Capdevila, Labrona, Waxhead, Dave Todaro.

Another group piece, this one featuring Waxhead (left and barely visible in bottom corner), Turtle Caps (above ladder), Futur Lasor Now (above door), Deadliest Rosa (middle bottom), Loks (right) and El Moot Moot (right wall). In alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

From a 2015 Chromatic block party.

Waxhead (top) and El Moot Moot (bottom) at a 2015 Chromatic block party.

Waxhead (top) and Lyfer (bottom) in alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

In alley behind St-Laurent.

Free5 (left), Waxhead and Turtle Caps in alley off Hotel de Ville.

Waxhead (left) and Camille (right) in alley off Napoleon.

Piece in alley between St-Laurent and Clark

Piece in the alley between St-Laurent and Clark in 2013, see below for the evolution of it. Photo © Mr Mocha.

Piece in the alley between St-Laurent and Clark in 2014, see above for earlier version.

Small piece in the McGill Ghetto.

Entrance of a Plateau alley.

At the back of a Plateau alley.

Waxhead (left), Cryote (top), Gives (grey letters) and VSOP (right letters).

In alley behind St-Laurent.

Waxhead representing Wzrds Gng in alley off Duluth.

Waxhead (right), Gawd (left) in alley between St-Denis and Drolet.

Waxhead and Cryote on Fairmount near St-Laurent (wheatpastes by Futur Lasor Now and unidentified artist as well as painted doors by Turtle Caps also visible).

Same location as above, but one year earlier.

In downtown alley behind Ste-Catherine.

Mural in alley behind Président-Kennedy (graff piece at the bottom is by Otek).

other small pieces / autres petites pièces

Pieces in this section are shown in approximate reverse chronological order, so the most recent are at the top.

Les pièces de cette section de la galerie sont présentées en ordre chronologique inverse approximatif, de la plus récente à la plus vieille que j’ai eu la chance de photographier.

For the Ru street fair on Mont-Royal.

On an electrical box.

On canal Lachine.

On canal Lachine.

At the PSC legal graffiti wall.

At the Rouen legal graffiti tunnel.

At the abandoned Montreal Hippodrome.

At the abandoned Montreal Hippodrome.

On a sidewalk panel on Amherst for the 2016 edition of the MTL En Arts festival.

On St-Laurent, presumably a collaboration with someone else.

Yolacocacola (left) and Waxhead (right) on train.

Waxhead (left) and Yolacocacola (right) on train.

Waxhead (left) and Starkey (right) at the legal graffiti tunnel on de Rouen.

Contribution to the 2015 edition of the Under Pressure Festival.

On St-Laurent.

On St-Laurent.

Rooftop piece above restaurant in the Plateau.

Small piece at the legal graffiti tunnel on de Rouen.

Waxhead (in blue) and Futur Lasor Now (top left) on Montreal Plateau rooftop.

Commissioned work for Chez José on Duluth.

Waxhead (right) and Andy Dass (left) at the Cabane à sucre secret gallery.

At the Cabane à sucre secret gallery, between pieces by Miss Me (left), Alysha Farling (right) and M. Abstrakt (around).

Piece done on board wall during the 2014 edition of the Under Pressure Festival.

Waxhead (left) and Pound Puppy (right) in the Plateau.

Small piece on St-Laurent.

On a Plateau house.

More by Waxhead next to the house mentioned above.

Small piece at the Cabane à sucre secret gallery (but done earlier than the rest of the Cabane works).

doors / portes

Pieces in this section are shown in approximate reverse chronological order, so the most recent are at the top.

Les pièces de cette section de la galerie sont présentées en ordre chronologique inverse approximatif, de la plus récente à la plus vieille que j’ai eu la chance de photographier.

Off-Mural door piece.

In Pointe St-Charles.

On a Plateau alley door.

In Old Montreal.

On a Plateau End door.

On a Plateau End door.

On a Plateau door.

On a Plateau door.

On a Pointe St-Charles door.

On a Plateau door.

On the doors of a St-Laurent business (see also next photo).

On the doors of a St-Laurent business (see also previous photo).

On a 3rd floor door in the Plateau.

On a St-Laurent door.

Same St-Laurent door as above.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau. Scroll down for an earlier Waxhead piece on this set of doors.

In a dark nook on a Plateau End door.

In Lachine; photo © Mocha Productions.

Waxhead (top) in Plateau End; also visible at the bottom is an older piece by Cryote.

Yolacocacola (top) and Waxhead (bottom) in Plateau End alley.

Yolacocacola (top) and Waxhead (bottom) in Plateau End alley.

El Moot Moot (left) and Waxhead (right) in alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

Two for the price of one behind an industrial building in Mile End (actually three if you count the small drawing in the bottom right corner). This wall was later redone as a much larger mural with Cryote, keeping the door intact. Scroll up this page for photo.

In the alley between St-Laurent and Clark

Tribute to Hayao Miyazaki in McGill ghetto.

On a door in a small Plateau alley.

In the alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

In the alley between St-Laurent and Clark

Plateau door.

Plateau door.

St-Laurent door.

St-Laurent door.

In the alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

Commissioned work for Sophie Sucrée on Des Pins.

In the alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

Waxhead on doors of a house on St-Dominique painted over background by Mastrocola. The central done were later redone, scroll up to see.

Collaboration between Waxhead (beige) and Birdo (green) in alley behind St-Urbain, near Prince-Arthur.

Two garage doors by Waxhead from his Wzrds Gng days in alley between St-Denis and Drolet.

In alley between St-Laurent and Clark, with a creature by Cryote (in blue).

On a door in a small Plateau alley.

Representing the Wzrds Gng in St-Henri.

Sun Youth prod

As the 2016 Mural Festival was kicking off, a bunch of mostly local artists were invited by Waxhead to participate in a major production on the front wall of the Sun Youth building. The work that was done is striking, but the other great thing about it is that it brought together street artists and graffiti writers. Only sections involving Waxhead are shown here. To view to complete prod, see the bottom of this post.

Alors que se tenait l’édition 2016 du Festival Mural, une douzaine d’artistes surtout locaux étaient invités par Waxhead à contribuer à une production majeure sur le mur de devant de l’édifice logeant Jeunesse Au Soleil. L’oeuvre globale qui en résulte est extraordinaire, mais elle se démarque aussi par son mélange de pièces figuratives et de graffitis. Seules les sections impliquant Waxhead sont présentées ici. Pour voir l’ensemble de cette production, voir cet article.

SBU One, with creature by Waxhead above and small critter by Starkey at the far left.

Meor, with a bit of Waxhead top left.

unidentified artist, with a bit of Waxhead and Cryote above.

Ekes with some Waxhead above and Cryote at the far left.

Marc Sirus on letters with creatures by Cryote (left) and Waxhead (right and on doors).

Hitem with characters by Waxhead and Cryote.

This wall shows Waxhead top left around letters by Getso, Cryote in pink top right, Meor in the middle beneath Cryote, Peru143 middle right, Mole Patrol bottom left, <Cryote bottom middle and Pound Puppy middle right.

Another Waxhead/Cryote combo at Sun Youth.

Duluth house

Waxhead has been doing and redoing the front of this Plateau house since 2012. See its evolution below in chronological order.

Waxhead a plusieurs fois fait et refait le devant de cette maison du Plateau depuis 2012. Les photos ci-dessous apparaissent en ordre chronologique, vous permettant d’en voir l’évolution.

Earliest photographed version, from 2012.

Later in 2012. Addition of Gawd in the upper part and Waxhead redid the window. Scroll down for more.

2013 edition, still with Gawd at the very top.

The first of two 2014 remakes.

The second of two 2014 remakes.

The first of three 2015 remakes.

The second of three 2015 remakes.

The third of three 2015 remakes.

After an extended break Waxhead finally redid the window of the above house in late 2017. Gawd is still visible above. Drawings in the window are by Waxhead and Sloast.

other painted work / autre art peint

Pieces in this section are shown in approximate reverse chronological order, so the most recent are at the top.

Les pièces de cette section de la galerie sont présentées en ordre chronologique inverse approximatif, de la plus récente à la plus vieille que j’ai eu la chance de photographier.

On public piano. See other angle below.

On public piano. See other angle above.

A ‘Your Face Here’ board done during the 2017 edition of Mural Festival.

Reverse side of the above ‘Your Face Here’ board from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Sherbooke street end, side 1.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Sherbooke street end, side 2.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Mont-Royal street end, side 1.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Mont-Royal street end, side 2.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Mont-Royal street end, close-up.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Mont-Royal street end, close-up.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Mont-Royal street end, close-up.

Cement blocks from the 2017 edition of Mural Festival, Mont-Royal street end, close-up.

Found in a schoolyard, this was done for a street sale on Mont-Royal at the end of Summer 2016.

Skateboard.

Waxhead (left), Starkey (centre), Oram79 (right) for the 2015 percussion festival in the Old Port.

Street installation for the 2015 edition of Mural Festival (angle 1/3).

Street installation for the 2015 edition of Mural Festival (angle 2/3).

Street installation for the 2015 edition of Mural Festival (angle 3/3).

Back of information panel for the 2015 edition of Mural Festival.

Chromatic production from the summer of 2015.

A side-treat from the above edition of Chromatic.

Next to volleyball field in Parc Jeanne-Mance

This was done during the 2014 edition of Mural Festival and ended being hung in the Cabane à sucre secret gallery.

On wall where eventually would be created the Cabane à sucre secret gallery; photo © Toest

Waxhead art in motion.

hand-drawn work / art dessiné

In a Mile End back alley.

In a Mile End back alley.

At the abandoned Montreal Hippodrome.

At the abandoned Montreal Hippodrome.

In a Mile End alley.

In a Mile End alley.

In the Plateau.

In Mile End.

Unofficial piece done during the 2016 MTL En Arts event.

In a Mile End alley.

In alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

In Mile End alley.

On door in alley between St-Laurent and Clark.

Well hidden behind an industrial building in Mile End.

Well hidden behind an industrial building in Mile End.

In Mile End.

In the Plateau.

Drawing or stencil by Dookie3 (in red) ‘extended’ by Waxhead (in black).

In McGill ghetto alley.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau, with Futur Lasor Now and Turtle Caps.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau (artist at the bottom in is unidentified).

Small piece in a Plateau End alley.

Waxhead (white) and Cryote (yellow) in Mile End.

In the Plateau.

In Parc Jeanne-Mance.

In the Plateau.

In a Plateau alley.

Waxhead (bottom) and Neko? (top; looks like Cryote) in the Plateau.

In the Plateau.

In a Plateau alley.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau.

In a Plateau alley.

Small piece in a Plateau End alley.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau.

In the Plateau.

In Mile End.

printed stickers / autocollants imprimés

Large sticker.

Large sticker.

Both images are also sometimes seen on their own.

With one by Turtle Caps on the right.

hand-drawn stickers / autocollants dessinés

collaboration stickers

Collaboration with ROC514.

Sticker of ROC514‘s iconic bird dressed up in Waxhead’s art (paste-up variation listed below).

Collaboration with ROC514.

Collaboration between Waxhead and El Moot Moot.

As above, different colours.

As above, different colours.

Another collaboration between Waxhead and El Moot Moot.

As above, different colours.

As above, different colours.

This one also features Turtle Caps

Collaboration sticker between Waxhead (blue) and 69 aka 6ara9e (truck)

wood-ups / bois peint

The pieces in this section are wood-ups, wood cut-outs by Starkey, painted by Waxhead and installed all over town.

Les items de cette section sont des pièces de bois coupées par Starkey, peintes par Waxhead et installées aux quatre coins de la ville.

In Mile End.

In Mile End.

In a Plateau alley.

In Mile End.

In the Quartier des Spectacles.

Starkey (left) and Waxhead (right) in Mile End.

In Mile End.

In the Red Light District.

This one has Starkey‘s own Wabbit at the top, anonymous (middle left), Waxhead (middle right), Kind (bottom left) and IAmBatman (bottom right).

In Mile End.

In the Quartier des Spectacles.

In St-Henri.

Found in Hochelaga.

Oval-shaped wood cut-out found in Hochelaga.

In Mile End.

In Mile End.

This piece was found in Chinatown.

In Plateau End.

On an abandoned house in the Plateau.

other pasted work/ autre travail collé

Poster based on a design previously seen on sticker (see stickers above).

Another poster based on a design previously seen on sticker (see stickers above).

Paint into the grooves.

On record.

Beneath an old Space Invader.

On ceramic tiles, photo © Waxhead.

On ceramic tiles.

On ceramic tiles.

Paste-up of ROC514‘s iconic bird dressed up in Waxhead’s art (sticker variation also listed above).

This is not in great condition, but it is included in this gallery because it’s the only known wheatpaste by Waxhead alone to have been discovered since I’ve been photographing street art.

other / autre

Waxhead and Turtle Caps graffiti.

Tag.

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