Laurence & Alexandre’s Montreal Mix

updated Apr 30, 2019
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(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Name: Laurence and Alexandre
Location: Petite-Patrie; Montreal
Size: 940 square feet
Years lived in: 1 year

Alex and Laurence were looking for an unusual place. A merge of the functional “Batcave” and the artistic grandiloquence of the Mysore Palace in India. They found this apartment, with enough wall space to hang all of Alexandre’s artworks (from past exhibitions) and Laurence’s numerous travel souvenirs.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

The apartment is full of architecturally strange surprises. A few steps that lead to the living room. A few others that lead to the DJ booth in the dining room. A small open office/music space adjacent to the kitchen. A shallow closet in the dining area now converted into a bar that can easily be hidden.

A window in the living room that overlooks another window in the bedroom. All of these things make this apartment peculiar, fun and intriguing. The only big embarrassment Alex and Laurence have is a box that they never opened since moving in!

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: ” I would still like to write concrete poems, but I can only do it sometimes.” Ian Hamilton Finlay

Inspiration: We were looking for something between the sober-functional Batcave and the artistic grandiloquence of the Mysore Palace in India. We found this space that used to be owned by friends and it became clear for us that it had enough walls to hang all of Alexandre’s artworks (from past exhibitions) and Laurence’s numerous travel souvenirs. The empty spaces are filled with plants because they neither exist in the Batcave nor the Mysore palace. Plus, this potted nature is essential in our home for our happiness and sanity.

Favorite Element: The living and dining room are perfect for reading, entertaining and having friends over, as well as dancing. Adjacent to the kitchen, the “extra” room is perfect for impromptu conferences and musical moments. We also loooove to have breakfast on the huge patio during summer.

Biggest Challenge: Lack of natural light. Also, the strange steps in the living room built in the late 1990s.

What Friends Say: Can we come back soon?

Biggest Embarrassment: A box we never opened since we moved in.

Proudest DIY: The 24-karat golden plated garden dwarf made by both of us at our very first weeks of dating. Also, customizing most of our pieces of furniture.

Biggest Indulgence: Alexandre: The bar in the cupboard’s dining area and the compost bin (making my own earth is my most evident hippy side). Both: The outdoor garden.

Best Advice: Always replicate exactly what your neighbor does. I’m kidding! Be yourself. Of course be yourself. Always hesitate before buying something new, but go-fast if you are able to see the potential of a found object.

Dream Sources: Marché aux puces St-Michel, garage sales in the Eastern townships, antique boutiques in the South-East of Montreal. Every country we ever visited.

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A few steps leading to the the living room. (Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • “Propaganda Engineering ” frame from Shepard Fairey , 2009
  • ” Vue d’un bungalow du Sofitel Heiva” from Alexandre’s exhibition “Et in arcadia Ego” in 2010

    • Teak sofa bought at St-Michel Flea market. We made the cushions with a second hand pair of jeans found on Plaza St-Hubert.
    • Shelving : basic Ikea pine boards dyed by Laurence.
    • Diptych from the series Hazel house, AlexandreCv 1/1, 2011
    • Photograph “Seegmuller Tower in the Rhin, Strasbourg” from Alexandre’s exhibition, Proof 20, 2012 Toronto
    • “Chicago L train interpretation”, Chicago architecture fondation
    (Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Chest of drawers from India
  • Litography from the cuban artist Jennifer from the series “De lo invisible visible” bought during our trip in the Islands
  • Lithography ” El testimonio” from a cuban artist Maral
  • Portrait of a girl from the photograph William Notman 19th century
  • Statue representing the “Victoire de samothrace” (the original is in the Louvre in Paris and 5,57 meter hight). Stolen at the office Christmas exchange gift game (apparently bought from a greek merchant by a colleague)
    • Golden Ganesha brought recently from our last travel in Madurai, India.
    • Large photo of a group of unknown kids biking, found in the basement of the former City Hall of Saint-Pierre, in Montreal.
  • (Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Kitch italo-potugese-inspired kitchen cabinet and ceramic
  • The so so common Ikea kitchen cart
  • Dave Kryskow hockey card
  • Little frame of an unknow nanny
  • “Eat more Kale” campaign magnet from Montpelier Vermont
  • Metro magnet” create your own subway map from Spacing magazine
  • “Kühne Weinkraut” Sauerkraut can as a floyer pot found in the garbage bin of some market
  • (Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Color paint: Rona Recycled painting, Pacifique
  • (Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Hidden bar in the closet space of the dining room wall : What else to do with this small awkward space? The tablets were found in a pile of construction debris behind the house. Every bottle in the bar is a opportunity to tell the story behind it! A pisco bottle offered by a friend visiting from Peru, thankful for helping him convince the immigration bureau to visit Montreal. An indian whiskey from Bengalore. A Gewürztraminer marc eau de vie found in a cave in Strasbourg. And so many more…
  • The small hanging pantheon is an homage of Greek ruins. Of what was built to be beautiful but damaged over time. Like alcohol can be with souvenirs: romantic and devastating.

  • Serigraphy ” Montreal” by Mathieu Dionne for SURPRISE 2010
  • Photo: ” Panier de basket dans un bungalow abandoné de l’île de Huanine” from the Alexandre’s exhibition ” Et in arcadia Ego” in 2010

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    Thanks, Alexandre & Laurence!