Montreal is a cultural epicentre of Canada, with merged cultures and diverse art and culinary styles, the city has something for everyone. This guide will point you to some of the best and most creative artists in Montreal, as well as its most acclaimed chefs and their unique culinary genres.
Juliet Mackie is a Métis artist and PhD student at Concordia University, originally from Vancouver Island, BC, studying her research topic, “Reconstituting Indigenous Identities through Portraiture and Storytelling”. Mackie’s passion for fine arts first began as a child while taking art classes throughout elementary and high school, and in 2015 she moved to Montreal to study painting and drawing at Concordia University where she received her BFA. In 2019 Mackie ventured into beadwork, and has since utilised the medium to connect with her Métis culture.
Chelsea Rae is a Montreal creative, best known for her pressed flower creations and visual poetry. Rae originally hails from the Maritimes, her youthful hobby of flower pressing soon blossoming into a business as requests for her pieces grew in frequency. She mainly works with ferns and wildflowers, creating individual unique pieces, specialising in a range of projects from bouquet framing to vibrant visual displays.
Mélanie Demers is a multidisciplinary artist, who has choreographed 30 works across Europe, America, Africa and Asia, and founded MAYDAY, a Montreal based dance company, in 2007. Here she works to investigate the link between the poetic and the political, putting on shows such as Les Angles Morts (2006), Sense of Self (2008), Junkyard/ Paradise (2010) and Goodbye (2012) which all explore this theme. In 2016, Demers began collaborations with Animal Triste and Icône Pop, both works that are now touring internationally. In 2021, Mélanie Demers received the Grand Prix de la danse de Montréal, celebrating her impact on her era of dance.
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David McMillan is the co-author of popular cookbook, Joe Beef: Surviving the Apocalypse: Another Cookbook of Sorts, originally hailing from Montreal kitchens before working at a seaside inn and restaurant on Vancouver Island called Sooke Harbour House. Here is where he learned about the benefits of positive mental health of kitchen staff, as well as a loose menu and market-driven cooking style. One of his most celebrated recipes is the Dutch Baby, which he was first introduced to at Sooke Harbour House, a versatile German dish complete with a pancake exterior and a sweet or savoury filling.
Gianna Pandolfini is a private chef who aims to serve homemade, fine Italian cuisine, and emulate the atmosphere and experience of a restaurant while clients remain comfortable in their own homes. She believes that food is a catalyst for bringing strangers together, garnering excitement and socialisation. She prioritises fresh ingredients, such as local fruits and vegetables, cured meats, an array of herbs and spices, and pungent cheeses.
Maha Bensouda is a Moroccan cuisine expert in Montreal, striving to bring authentic Moroccan experiences to foodies throughout the city. She optimises Moroccan cuisine’s savoury and comforting flavours, sharing recipes such as her classical and authentic Chicken, preserved lemon and olive recipe.
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