Tag Archives: montreal

Alleyn 65

I’ve been swimming in garbage of late, and as a result some of my finds take a while to get processed. This painting is a good example. I found it months ago and immediately thought it was really cool and very well done. Still, it went into my garage where it sat largely forgotten until yesterday, when I finally got around to doing some basic research on it.

(Note: all these photos are of high quality, so you can click on them and zoom in!)

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The top left is signed Alleyn 65. It didn’t take me long to find out that it was likely made in 1965 by Edmund Alleyn, a well regarded Quebec artist. The signature is very similar to ones seen in this Google image search. The work also bears resemblance to some on Alleyn’s bio for that time period; his “Période Technologique.” He died in Montreal on Christmas Eve, 2004 at the age of 73.

This piece is titled “Jour Z,” which I cannot seem to find reference to online.

By all accounts Alleyn was a brilliant artist, perhaps a bit ahead of his time. There was a retrospective of his work recently at the Montreal Museum of Contemporary Art, and the National Gallery of Canada owns 11 of his pieces.

The painting is unfortunately a little bit damaged. There are a few stains from water dropping on it, and a few small places where the paint is chipped or the canvas ripped. However, I don’t think these issues take much away from the piece, and I suspect they could be restored fairly easily by a professional.

Assuming the painting was indeed done by Alleyn, it could be worth a fair bit of money. His work has sold at the Heffel auction house for between 1,256 and 16,250$. Because of the damage I expect that the upper part of that range is far out of reach, but I still think it’s likely that the painting could sell for somewhere in the four figures (for reference, this one is fairly large, roughly 32 x 21.5″). If not, maybe I’ll just keep it myself! I always thought it was really cool, even moreso now that I know its story.

Anyways, what do you think of the painting? And perhaps more importantly, what should I do with it? Let me know in the comments!

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to garbagefinds.com
6. Follow me on Instagram

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

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Servire Populo pt. 1

On my phone I keep a record of the houses or locations that seem to be producing quality garbage. This helps me remember to check them out when I’m in the area.

This place in St Michel was first productive back in August when my mom was in town for a visit. I took her on one of my runs and checked the few spots I had logged in the borough. However, this one was a bit further away than the others, and after I had little luck at the other spots I almost decided to skip it. At the time, I couldn’t even remember why I added it to my notes.

However, I ended up giving it a chance, and I’m glad I did because the house ended up producing loads of quality junk. It’s also where I found that great collection of vintage clothes from a while back. Plus, it was nice to show my mom that little treasures can be found in ordinary looking trash (I remember our best finds coming from that bag closest to the bottom right).

Months later I’m still keeping an eye on this spot. In fact, I plan on checking it out again tonight. Finds have been a bit more sporadic of late, with the tosser skipping the occasional week (or two), but I’m loyal to my favourite spots and I’ll keep going back until I think there’s nothing left to find.

We took that solid vintage dresser, by the way, and it eventually sold for 50$. I found the matching vanity later on, and finally got it listed yesterday (pretty good price too if you ask me – I mostly want to get it out of the garage).

This was some of the stuff my mom and I saved that first night. As you can see, a lot of it is neat vintage junk. There’s a few vintage perfumes, a couple cool brooches, and some religious medallions, among other things. I’m surprised I never saw a bill authentication card like the one below the skate before. I wish this pic was better, but it’ll have to do.

The sterling silver pin I found that first night is why I titled this series Servire Populo. Apparently, this is the motto of Canada Post, and it translates as “to serve the people.” I also found lots of nursing stuff, so it seems that the people who lived here worked in public service.

I found a few nice watches, but none of them were exceptional or eBay worthy. Those eyeglass frames though are made by Yves St Laurent, and should make me a bit of money.

I found a couple of pipe bags but unfortunately no pipes. I did find a few stamps in that organizer though.

That figurine at the top left was actually a cookie. It ended up in a free box, but I doubt anyone took it. The Parker Pen box is nice, though it didn’t come with the actual pen.

I saved lots of vintage Christmas thingies, which I’m guessing are cake toppers. I think they’re still kicking around somewhere if anyone’s interested!

That Fragonard perfume went to a local buyer, and I remember selling that little notepad for 50c at my last yard sale.

The black cat was probably part of that collectible vintage Stafford tea set, but unfortunately I didn’t find any other pieces from it.

A couple of these pins are nursing related. The sunglasses are Polaroid Cool-Rays, but not the ones that can be sold for a lot of money.

That’s just the beginning, I’ll share more finds soon enough! And, if I’m lucky I’ll find some new stuff tonight.

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to garbagefinds.com
6. Follow me on Instagram

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

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Michel

The original post with address erased.

I did a little yard sale a few weeks back and returned home to a message from a reader. It contained a screenshot of a post on a local Facebook page informing people about an apartment being emptied in St Michel. I got the message many hours after the fact, and figured I was probably too late to find anything good. In the Plateau an obviously interesting trash pile (ie: one that attracts attention even from casual pickers) will often be ripped to shreds within a few hours.

I had planned on doing a trash run in the area regardless, so I went and checked it out just in case. As you probably expect by now, there were indeed still things to be found and the pile itself was surprisingly intact. The trunks in the original picture were long gone, but most of those bags and milk crates remained – and seemed largely untouched.

Maybe the pile survived that long because there’s less foot traffic in St Michel as compared to the Plateau. But it could also be that the stuff didn’t look all that interesting at first glance.

A lot of what I saved was stored inside old binders, the kind I would have used back in high school. But instead of containing old school notes these mostly contained old slides and photos.

I should be able to make a few bucks off the one binder of Expo 67 photos.

It contains about eight pages of slides, most of which look well shot and well captioned.

I think my photos of the slides came out pretty well all things considered. Some turned out better than others, but unfortunately I couldn’t spend too much time on them. If you want to zoom in on the photos below, click on them and find the “view full-size” button on the bottom right hand side of the screen.

My plan at the most is to auction them on eBay. I don’t usually do auctions, but I figure that Expo 67 market is reasonably hot right now, and auctions make it so that I don’t have to think too hard about pricing.

Otherwise, a lot of the photos feature various flora, fauna, and fungi. His knowledge of plants looks to have been pretty good, as many of them are captioned with their latin names.

These slides were the most usual. They were taken in Africa in the 50s and 60s …

… and this particular page features multiple elephants being butchered. Unfortunately (or fortunately, if you have a weak stomach) my photo of this page didn’t come out as clearly as some of the others.

I wonder how common photos of Africa are from that era. I suspect they’re still common enough, but I’m sure they’re less common than tourist photos of Europe and North America. Personally, I’ve found photos from the north of Africa before (like Egypt and Tunisia), but never from the area around the equator. Most of these photos look to have been taken in Gabon, Cameroon, and the Central African Republic. It wasn’t immediately clear, from my brief study of the photos, what the photographer was doing in the area.

I also found binders of developed photos, including some of birds …

… and a few smaller albums filled with photos of local pow-wows. The location of these photos is unclear, but the other ones were taken in Kanesatake near Oka. They were all taken in the mid 1990s.

I found one film, a 16mm reel that was captured in Gabon in the 1950s. It could be interesting to digitize.

I also saved a pillow bag full of negatives that were taken in Nepal …

… and some smaller items suitable for the yard sale pile. The 80s watches are kind of neat, I’ll throw a battery in them and see if they work.

The coins were mostly from France in the 50s and 60s. The tokens on the right are for old French public telephones. None of these are worth much, but they’re good yard sale material.

All in all this was a pretty interesting pile. I would guess that the person who took the photos has passed on. If he was in Africa in the early 1950s that would make him at least 85 years old today. That’s not too old of course, but I have a hard time seeing someone deciding to throw away their life’s work like this. It’s a bit sad to find these things on the curb, but I like to think that he might have been happy to know that others are appreciating his work.

I owe thanks to the reader who informed me of this spot, as otherwise it’s unlikely that I would have happened upon it. If anyone else knows of an intriguing garbage pile, feel free to send me an email.

I plan on doing a yard sale tomorrow at 4096 Coloniale near Duluth. My storage space there is a total mess and I want to get it organized while it’s still warm out. Hope to see you there!

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to garbagefinds.com
6. Follow me on Instagram

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

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