Dazzle My Heart, Mural Artist Michelle Hoogveld

Urban art is a form of self-expression and social commentary that has the power to alter any space into something special, memorable, and exciting. There are many different types of urban art: there are “street artists” who leave their mark on buildings; there are artists who specialize in creating characters out of found objects; there are mural artists who are revitalizing cities across the globe.

The City of Montreal Celebrates Art

Montreal’s Mural Festival is an 11-day event that brings artists from around the world.  With a mission to reinforce Montreal as a “go to global destination for contemporary urban art,” the MURAL Festival has transformed Montreal over the past six festival seasons.

Dazzle My Heart”, a permanent mural by Michelle Hoogveld, was a collaboration with Mural Montreal in 2021.  Presented by the City of Montreal, this project was a part of a revitalization initiative for the city’s various neighbourhoods.

“Dazzle My Heart” was a massive undertaking, considering that the hotel is over 171 feet high.  Imagining the artist working on a sling stage suspended from the rooftop of the hotel takes my breath away. Michelle Hoogveld’s creative energy transformed the building with vibrant hues which included over 80 different shades of colour.

“Dazzle My Heart” Montreal, Quebec

Dazzle My Heart by Michelle Hoogveld

Le Germain Hotel Montreal unveiled a major project collaboration with Mural, North America’s largest urban art festival. Following its official re-opening after extensive renovations, the boutique hotel is exhibiting an impressive, permanent mural — Dazzle My Heart, by Canadian artist Michelle Hoogveld — on its front and side facade. This initiative is part of the 2021 Mural Arts Program presented by the City of Montreal to revitalize its various neighbourhoods.” Michelle Hoogveld Website

My last thought:  mural art is often seen as something only young people do, but I believe creating extraordinary urban art is ageless.  

Robert Henri, the American painter, and teacher, reminds me that, “The object isn’t to make art, it’s to be in that wonderful state which makes art inevitable.”

Published by Rebecca Budd

Blogger, Visual Storyteller, Podcaster, Traveler and Life-long Learner

48 thoughts on “Dazzle My Heart, Mural Artist Michelle Hoogveld

  1. what a wonderful splash of colour in the urban environment!


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    1. Colour changes the way we view the world, doesn’t it, Graham. Many thanks for traveling virtually to Montreal with me. I understand that Michelle Hoogveld was originally from Alberta. She moved to Montreal to complete this mural. I understand that she travels the world to create murals.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. I don’t know how Michelle Hoogveld was able to visualize the large mural from such close quarters. I shudder when I think of her high up in the air spraying against the wind that was no doubt an inconvenience. I understand that weather is a huge variable in creating murals. I am delighted that you stopped by and for your comments!! Very much appreciated.

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    1. I am delighted you traveled virtually to Montreal with me, Margaret. “Dazzle my Heart” did indeed transform the area. It certainly caught everyone’s attention as we went by on the Hop-on Hop-off bus tour. What I learned about Montreal in our 2-week visit was its vibrant colour, energy, food, art and culture. It was truly an unforgettable adventure.

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  2. Such a beautiful sight, and no wonder the creator is a woman! This kind of art gives life to these soulless forms. I wish all the buildings in the world would have such views. Thank you, dear Rebecca.

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    1. Many thanks for joining me virtually in Montreal, Frank. I understand that Michelle Hoogveld was given 24 hours to produce a design for this project. So I’m with you, on the thumbs up to artist and hotel who embraced the artist’s design.

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    1. The mural has been a boost to the entire area, Liz. The walking tour guides that we followed always brought us to this mural.

      This is the hotel’s perspective on the project, as noted in an August 13, 2021 article of Hotelier:

      “It’s important for us to participate in the cultural and commercial revival of the downtown area. By using the hotel’s facade as an artistic showcase, we hope to restore the value of the downtown area and encourage people to visit and keep coming back,” explains Christiane Germain, co-president of Germain Hotels.”https://www.hoteliermagazine.com/le-germain-hotel-montreal-unveils-mural/

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    1. I agree, Dave. I read Michelle Hoogveld’s thoughts on this project in August 5, 2021 Global News article:

      “The grand piece is called “Dazzle My Heart” and Hoogveld says her work explores the resonance people have to colour and the ability to evoke feelings of happiness, joy and genuine connection.

      Something many people don’t see, according to Hoogveld, is the geometric heart shape at the centre of the mural.

      “I really wanted to feature that, as this beautiful reminder that we are all connected,” Hoogveld said. https://globalnews.ca/news/8088223/montreal-mural-festival-hotel-germain/

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  3. Yes, indeed, this is dazzling. However, the danger of creating art from an elevated sling does give me pause. My husband creates dazzling mural art: on an easel and on ground level, much safer in my opinion. Thanks for bringing us awe-inspiring photos, Rebecca!

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    1. Marian – much safer in my opinion too. I admire the window washers that seem to float in air from on high and those hearty souls that can climb mountains and stand tall on the peaks without becoming dizzy. Does you husband have a website to view his artwork?

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      1. For over thirty years, my husband did art/music performances in public schools all over the United States–and even in Ukraine before the war. Here is the website that features this aspect of his art: http://americanartassemblies.com/

        Since the pandemic, he is concentrating more on book illustration. At the moment, he is doing the layout for my second memoir, My Checkered Life: A Marriage Memoir. It is very challenging to learn the sophisticated program InDesign since this was not part of his repertoire when he had a graphic arts business. Thanks for asking!

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  4. Fascinating, Rebecca! I’m ambivalent and curious about its reception by Montrealers. Boring modern architecture certainly needs some enlivening. Maybe it’s akin to putting a colorful children’s bandage on an eyesore. As someone who admires Frank Gehry and Santiago Calatrava, I’m surprised by my own reaction. 🙂

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    1. Many thanks for your comment, Mary Jo. What I most enjoy about mural art is that it brings art to where we live, work, and play. Art is not hidden behind walls that ask for an entry fee. It opens debate and reflection. In our 2 week visit to Montreal, my takeaway was that Montreal and Montrealers have embraced mural art. It is everywhere. Many of these mural will be lost in transitions from old to new buildings. There were a couple of murals that we visited that were already disappearing behind new structures.

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    1. I am delighted that you joined me in Montreal, Martina. The first time I saw this building as we drove by in the hop-on hop-off bus tour, it seemed the entire street vibrated with colour.

      A few days ago, I was on the Benjamin Moore website to find the colour trends for 2023. The first colour of the eight chosen was “Raspberry Blush” and the last one was “North Sea Green.” I often wonder who thinks up the names because they certainly add drama to the colours which are already dramatic.

      Better Homes and Gardens produced this short video: https://www.bhg.com/decorating/color/paint/color-of-the-year-2023/

      According to BH&G, 2023 colours are all about self expression. Should be a very interesting year.

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      1. I had to check on google, Rebecca, for the translation of “Raspberry Blush” and have come to the conclusion that this additional “Blush” is necessary for people, who do not know anymore that raspberries are, when ripe, just rasperry red!!!! I havn’t got the time to go to all these differences, but I exactly know what a raspberry looks like. Thank you very much for having made me think about this colour question:)

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    1. I couldn’t imagine this in London either, Robbie, but I found the Megaro which has brilliant colours. This is from their website:

      “A landmark building in London’s Kings Cross, we weren’t always this colourful, but in 2012 we changed our skin and the building mural was designed and painted by four members of street art collective, Agents of Change.

      The idea is basically to bring a bit of fun and colour to a drab stretch of road, now when you come out of St Pancras, you’ll think: wow, what’s that?” – Antonio Megaro (Owner)” https://www.themegaro.co.uk/

      Resa introduced me to mural art and artists several years ago. There is exponential growth around the world.

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      1. Hi Rebecca, Resa also made me think a lot more about mural art and street art. We have it here too. I aim to take pictures some day and share them. Ours is not as copious as in Canada, but some of it is very good. Thanks for the link. I remember when I visited Hollyrood Palace being surprised by the ceilings which are mainly white but so opulent and ornate. There are some colour inlays into the ceilings. The ceilings were the thing I remember the most from our trip to that palace.

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  5. Thank you for sharing the photos of the beautiful buildings. This certainly males the fronts of the colorful buildings a temptation for long walks around to appreciate the beauty! I can only appreciate the bravery of the one who was able to hang for long hours to accomplish this very outstanding beauty. The photos show an excellent example of mural art! It not only changed the front from a plain, possible drab exterior, to a beautiful exterior to encourage countless customers not only to admire, but also to be paying customers.

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  6. What a beautiful building, Rebecca. Color changes everything, doesn’t it? A huge undertaking by Hoogveld, but well worth it. And I love the Henri quote. It makes me want to make some space for art to happen today. 🙂

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    1. How wonderfully said, Diana – “space for art to happen today.” I just finished reading Joan Didion’s’ reflections in “The Year of Magical Thinking” and thought that 2023 would be the year of creative thinking, Creativity has a strong connection to gratitude, which I want to explore. I am delighted you traveled virtually with me to Montreal.

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