Colourful Art and Croissants at Chez Fred

A Piece in Hand. Julian Baslyk A Piece in Hand. Julian Baslyk

Julian Baslyk‘s artwork colours a room brightly, and with the support of friends, family and other artists, his retrospective of the last four years was a great success. The vernissage took place at Chez Fred. Between the art, atmosphere and entertainment, the evening was fruitful for all who came to enjoy.

Julian Baslyk

An Alternate State by Julian Baslyk

“I like to experiment with different perspectives and the way shapes can play a role in that,” says Baslyk.

The showcase showed the transition from his earlier work which was mostly abstract to the newer landscapes. These surreal landscapes keep playing on the sense of colour and segmentation Baslyk developed in the 2000’s but with a little more structure.

“Every single shape is its own as well. Then there are shapes within shapes, and within those there’s shading,” Baslyk says. The texture that this technique creates draws you in. The mountainous forms and still waters evoke little flashbacks to the crystal palaces of a hallucinogenic trip into the outer space located in each viewer’s psyche.

Untitled Night. Julian Baslyk

Untitled NIght. Julian Baslyk

It was this kind of mood I tried to capture in the music that my friends and I played to accompany the show. Yours truly, Ben Kelly opened the vernissage with a short acoustic set, followed by an invigorating instrumental set by my band, made up of Jesse Mancini, Tim Cameron, and Jerry Morcos. We closed together, as Tarnation, full band style and then mingled with the crowd.

I got a couple words with the owner and namesake of Chez Fred, the fabulous Fred himself. He and his brother, Ludovic, opened the bakery-café August 2012.

“I’m a musician. I painted a little bit, and I love it,” says Fred. “But I’m a baker so I wanted to support local artists. So people who can do paintings, photographs, and music can come here. The only thing I haven’t done yet, because so far nobody wanted to, is theatre and sculpture. We need to try that!”

It’s a beautiful space for aspiring artists to gain a little exposure. Art is hung for one month at a time, and Fred doesn’t charge anything.

“I just want to give a space,” he says. And that he does. I’m excited to say that the boys and I have been invited back to play any time we like, so keep a look out for a couple weekend afternoon sets in the future. Julian was also lucky enough to get two months for his paintings, many of which are still for sale.

You can see a catalogue of Julian’s work HERE. He will be holding a larger exhibition in May, showcasing exclusively newer pieces at the Montreal Art Centre.

To get in touch with Fred to showcase your work, or talk about his favourite subject — bread and the love that goes into it — you can check out

Julian Baslyk’s exhibition is on display from February 1-March 30 at Chez Fred (5338 Sherbrooke West).