Graffiti and gastronomy combine for restaurant and art gallery hybrid in Montreal

by Kim Megson | 04 Dec 2015

A group of architects, artists, interior designers and developers have joined forces to open a seafood restaurant mixing street art, design and fine food in Montreal, Canada.

Être Avec Toi – which means ‘to be with you’ in English – opened on 3 December inside the city’s four star W Montreal Hotel.

Creative agency MASSIVart have collaborated with Sid Lee Architecture, real estate company Ivanhoé Cambridge and hospitality development consultants BPC on the project, which is called ÊAT for short.

Their aim was to create a restaurant that promotes the culture, symbols and history of Montreal by “blurring the boundaries of art access and offering guests art right at their table.”

Everything inside the restaurant has been created by both established and up-and-coming Montreal artists. Windows, tables, chairs and booths are all works of art, and murals designed by local street artists WIA and Stikki Peaches depict icons of history and popular culture. Spray-painted images of Darth Vader, Beethoven, James Dean and the city’s hockey legends jostle for wall space.

Waiting staff have been trained to answer questions about the art works and, from December to mid-February, famous local artists will create paintings in front of the guests as they eat.

“The concept goes beyond art curation,” said MASSIVart chief executive officer Philippe Demers. “We can really see the value that artists bring to a hotel like W and, through live performances and the fine ambiance they have created, to its clients."

The restaurant will serve dishes created by New York chef Alan Ashkinaze, formerly of the Waldorf Astoria, and Sébastien Giannini – previously an executive chef at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth in Montreal and the Le Méridien hotel in Nice, France.

A group of architects, artists, interior designers and developers have joined forces to open a seafood restaurant mixing street art, design and fine food in Montreal, Canada. Être Avec Toi – which means ‘to be with you’ in English – opened on 3 December inside the city’s four star W Montreal Hotel. Creative agency MASSIVart have collaborated with Sid Lee Architecture, real estate company Ivanhoé Cambridge and hospitality development consultants
CLD,HHR,HOT,RST,AAC,PRO,ARC,DES,DEV,INV
Artist Jason Wasserman designed ÊAT's distinctive tables / Patricia Brochu
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