Redditors created a hilarious tribute to Quebec in a massive pixel art battle
By the time the last square was filled on Reddit’s online collective mural, r/place, Quebec history and culture featured prominently in the center of the canvas. Poutine, maple syrup and even traffic cones have come together to pay an offbeat 8-bit tribute to La Belle Province.
Redditors from around the world banded together for four days in early April to fill a blank grid of four million square pixels with competing artwork.
There were certain limitations. Users could only add one new pixel every five minutes, slowing progress for anyone acting alone. A little coordination between users, on the other hand, meant that artworks quickly increased in detail and size or were overlaid by other designs. An artistic battle of epic proportions ensued, and the evolution of the mural was captured in time-lapse video.
During the project, members of a Quebec subreddit community staked and defended a significant portion of the web, covering it with tributes to favorite provincial landmarks, historical figures and cultural artifacts. Canada became the 11th most famous theme on the grid.
The resulting patchwork of pixels superimposed a maple tree under Quebec’s Château Frontenac and a recognizable portrait of former Prime Minister Réné Lévesque.
A flying canoe filled with pixel-wide lumberjacks has emerged from the moon, paying homage to the Quebec tale “Chasse-galerie”.
Nearby, a Godzilla sporting a toque and scarf burned down what looks like the Jacques-Cartier Bridge.
The logos of McGill, Concordia and the University of Sherbrooke interlocked like tiles in a mosaic, while the provincial flag featured a caribou, an inukshuk statue and an owl, as well as the controversial figure of the patriot nationalist flag .
An illustration of the Rocher Percé of the Gaspé Peninsula was next to the logos of the Montreal Canadiens and the Quebec Nordiques, a famous hockey rivalry despite the latter team no longer existing.
Laval’s “L” logo completes the lower left portion of the mural with a line of orange cones framing an outline of the province.
Even the SAQ was hailed – its logo nestled under the Olympic stadium.
On Monday evening, the artistic battle came to an end. Users were given the option to place only white tiles on the vibrating grid. It didn’t take long for all the crafty chaos to completely disappear.
This is the second time in five years that Reddit has hosted the collaborative pixel project. A smaller original launch took place in 2017.