In the brief history of the Farine Five Roses sign I wrote some years ago, I finished up by stating the following:

These words flash on and off in a slow rotation, such that one full cycle – lasting about 22 seconds – is as follows: top row on, bottom row on, both off; top row on, bottom row on, both off; top and bottom on, top and bottom off.

Yesterday I received an intriguing email from a gentleman called Giles Nicholson. Having grown up in Montreal back in the days when it still had the word ‘flour’ on the bottom (ie pre-1977), M. Nicholson was trying to remember what the flashing sequence of lights was before it went from three rows of neon to just two.

So: does anyone out there know the answer – and ideally have a film or video clip to prove it? Giles and I have had a look around the NFB’s very useful online collection of archival images, but without luck. Perhaps you’ve got some ideas of your own. Do leave us a comment!

{ 0 comments }

The sign stays in the picture (for now)

A short story from last night’s (Dec 13, 2013) CBC Montreal News about the Farine Five Roses sign getting a welcome reprieve. Direct link here. Le Devoir got the scoop the day before.

More →

How NOT to save a monster neon sign

We interrupt this leisurely art project for an important new break. Much ballyhoo this past week with the news that Ryerson University is trying to back out of its promise to save and reinstall the famous Sam the Record Man neon sign in Toronto. CBC Radio’s Jian Gomeshi, no stranger to vinyl records, has stepped […]

More →

Love Letters: Je Me Souviens

More Love Letters here.

More →

Archives & the City (Oct 22 – Nov 15), FOFA Gallery, Concordia University

The Farine Five Roses art project will be making an appearance at Archives & the City, Faculty of Fine Arts Gallery, Concordia University, from October 22 to November 15, 2012. Drop by and join in the fun! Le projet d’art Farine Five Roses est à l’exposition-concours Les archives et la ville (22 oct – 15 […]

More →

Let’s call it a renovation.

Mike Geiger, professional photographer and eagle-eyed sign watcher, has landed another exclusive story. On August 21st, he emailed to say “Griffintown – we have a problem.” He’d just taken the photo, above. Although the paint job he reported earlier has now advanced as far as the second row of letters, you can also clearly see […]

More →

From Snow Job to Paint Job

We interrupt this art project to bring you some very exciting news. If this photo taken by Mike Geiger on July 27, 2011, is to be believed, our beloved Farine Five Roses sign is getting a fresh coat of paint. This is huge news: someone, somewhere in the impenetrable bureaucracies of ADM and/or Smuckers has […]

More →

Love Letters: We Love Us So!

Thumbnail image for Love Letters: We Love Us So!
More →

Sign Language: First Responses!

Thumbnail image for Sign Language: First Responses!

I’ve just received some super responses to the Sign Language call for participation. Thanks to Anna Jane (good luck with the MFA defense!), Sophie, Jhave, and Katja. Join in! Keep ’em coming! (Also, if you didn’t catch it, I was recently interviewed on CTV about signs, and used the opportunity to talk a little bit […]

More →

Love Letters: We’re Trudeau, Fly Us.

Thumbnail image for Love Letters: We’re Trudeau, Fly Us.

Now we’re flying. (Modest alterations required: the T is a modified F.) What do you do with thirty soon-to-be scrapped, 15′ high, neon letters? Love Letters explores precisely that question. With tongue firmly planted in cheek, Matt Soar makes several proposals for installations around the city. Further ideas welcome! Que faire avec des lettres néons […]

More →

Love Letters: Here and There

Thumbnail image for Love Letters: Here and There

Proposal for an art installation all about scale, distance, and observation. What do you do with thirty soon-to-be scrapped, 15′ high, neon letters? Love Letters explores precisely that question. With tongue firmly planted in cheek, Matt Soar makes several proposals for installations around the city. Further ideas welcome! Que faire avec des lettres néons de […]

More →

Love Letters: South Bank Show

Thumbnail image for Love Letters: South Bank Show

Civic Pride for the South Shore. (Some modest alterations to the neon are required for this one, as the U and D are modified Os.) What do you do with thirty soon-to-be scrapped, 15′ high, neon letters? Love Letters explores precisely that question. With tongue firmly planted in cheek, Matt Soar makes several proposals for […]

More →

Sign Language (Call for Participation / appel à la participation)

Thumbnail image for Sign Language (Call for Participation / appel à la participation)

[English follows] Voici une intéressante opportunité de contribuer au projet d’art Farine Five Roses. Qu’on l’aime ou qu’on la déteste, l’enseigne fait partie du paysage montréalais depuis plus de 60 ans et ses jours sont comptés. Nous avons une quantité très limitée d’ensembles aimantés ‘Sign Language’ à donner aux artistes montréalais qui désirent utiliser les […]

More →

Love Letters: Pick a Letter…

Thumbnail image for Love Letters: Pick a Letter…

‘Pick a letter, any letter. Now, every important corporation in town can have its very own letter! Scrabble, anyone?’ Les lettres pour tous les entreprises du monde, comme Woodward’s à Vancouver! What do you do with thirty soon-to-be scrapped, 15′ high, neon letters? Love Letters explores precisely that question. With tongue firmly planted in cheek, […]

More →