Young French photographer Alexander Chamelat recently shot a collection of photographs of the Montreal subway. Taken from similar perspectives, the photographs are incredible views showing the tracks of the underground system.
How Chamelat actually positioned himself for these photos begs the question of how he was perched, obviously suspended above the Montreal subway rails. What see from his images are these vanishing lines of railways as they obscure into the dark, fooling the eye as they become smaller in the distance. Devoid of people and trains, the subways look deceptively tranquil and calm.
“I’m working in Québec for the summer, and I just finished a project on the Montréal Subway. I tried to adopt an original point of view with a central vanishing point,” says Chemelat of his series.
The rubber-tired Montreal Metro or Métro de Montréal is the major underground public transportation system in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. It is operated by the Société de transport de Montréal, and was launched on October 14, 1966, during the term of Mayor Jean Drapeau.
It originally had 26 stations on three separate lines, and has expanded to 68 stations on four lines measuring 69.2 km in length, servicing the north, east, and centre of the Island of Montreal with links to Longueuil, through other lines.
It is Canada’s second busiest subway, and North America’s fourth busiest in terms of total daily passenger volume, carrying an average of 1,241,000 daily passengers every weekday. The Montreal Metro drew inspiration from the Paris Metro, which in turn inspired the Marseille Metro, Lyon Metro, and the Mexico City Metro, all built a few years later, which also share the same rubber-wheel car design and comparable Montreal Metro station architecture.
Montreal residents that ride the subway must take pleasure in the beautiful architecture that greets them daily. These pictures taken by Chamelat shifts the focus away from the functional, utilitarian nature of the subway, showcasing instead its singular aesthetic appeal.
Talking of the collection, Chamelat says,
“I’ve always been fascinated by perspective and architecture…Each photograph is an addition of 3 photos. This technique offers a large angle of view on each side of the image.”
See his Montreal Subway portfolio here.