Archive for the ‘alleys’ Category

This is another blog post about Croft Street, a short street that runs between College and Harbord streets just east of Bathurst.   It has changed a lot since I first wrote about it in 2013.  The corner of Croft and College Streets was home to the mural commemorating the fire of 1904 – it is long gone.  In between then and now, the south end of Croft was spruced up with colourful murals and planters in 2016.   These are a few pictures that I took as I walked up Croft yesterday (after dodging construction stuff and workmen at College).

 

below: A mural by Elicser is at the northeast corner of College and Croft.

elicser mural on Croft street, man in doorway with a drink in a pineapple in his hand, other person sitting with hand over face

below: Praying mantis mural

mural of a large praying mantis on a wall

below: Croft is not immune to the construction/renovation craze that we’re in the midst of.

a digger and a blue porta-potty in a vacant lot construction site, with a row of backyards and backs of houses behind

below: The fire station tower at College and Bellevue is now visible from Croft street.

the fire station tower at College and Bellevue is visible beyond a vacant lot and a street of houses and backyards

below: Looking up Croft Street.  One of the garages now has a Raptors logo and the one next to it is being renovated.

Croft street alley with garages on the left, and apartments above some of them, a mural of a man's face where the bottom half has been painted over with white paint

below: Some of the 2016 murals and planters are still in place.

garage doors with murals in Croft street

a simple painting of a blue bird on a branch of leaves

below: Looking north across Vankoughnet Street

a very small white house at the corner of a street and an alley, a view up the alley

door with glass panel with white tape over one of the bottom corners, walls painted in yellow, pink, and blue splotches

below: A door to nowhere

2 storey building. Garage door covered with a tag graffiti on the bottom, a white door surrounded by brown shingles on the upper floor.

below: We are the future and we don’t want any junk mail

a wood wall and door in an alley painted red and brown, the number 74 on it twice, a mail slot with white paint around it to make slot look like mouth with tongue stuck out, no junk mail written too, a picture of a man on the door with the words we the future

below: The door with the metal strapping is still there.

a narrow brown door with metal strapping grid on it beside a garage door with red, yellow, and blue stripes, wall is covered with green shingles

below: A large grominator on a brick wall

a large grominator graffiti on a brick wall, blue eyes

below: Morning glory flowers and vine growing up a street sign pole.

a street sign pole with morning glory flowers and vine growing up it, one way sign, speed control zone sign, no parking signs,

below: More flowers, red rose stenciled onto a garage door

red rose stencil street art on a garage door

below: Garage doors painted by Bruno Smokey and Andrea Manica

garage doors with murals on Croft Street including one by Bruno Smokey

below: A fun ride in vibrant colours by dudeman

a fun mural of an old car by dudeman, in reds and oranges with front grille and radiator in blues

behind tall weeds, a painting on metal attached to a utility pole, painting of a bird, a red back sandpiper

at Harbord street entrance to Croft street, a woman on a bicycle waiting for traffic, Central Tech school across the street, a mural for the store Just For Her beside the cyclist

below: He may be blue but he’s smiling.

below: Preening and posing or just walking past.  Saturday afternoon in Graffiti Alley.

people in graffiti alley, walking, posing for photos, murals, art,

a man spray paints a street art piece in an alley, small red step stool ladder with some cans of spray paint

mual in alley with skull with gold halo

back of a building, in an alley, covered with street art. On top is a large white orek in white, green garbage bins in front

below:  It comes with words, a quote from Al Capone: “You can get much farther with a kind word and a gun, then you can with a kind word alone”.   A mural by Madmaxxoner

mural in an alley doorway, portrait of Al Capone in shades of grey, wearing a fedora, accompanied by words

below: A series of urban ninja squadron stickers on a pole

urban ninja squadron stickers on a post

below: A grey face on a door, part of a mural by elicser

elicser mural on a wall including a door that is painted with a large face in grey tones

below: Square face with a four pointed crown, drawn on orange

on an orange background, a black line drawing of a square face with four point crown on head and 4 vertical lines as teeth

a bright orange mini cooper is parked with another car in a small parking lot with two murals, one by hello kirsten and a large portrait by janus

large text street art in silver with blue and red highlights

below: So we meet alley drinking in fact(?) at 2 pm on a Teusday (sic Tuesday) it’s cool(?) and I have a half size bottle of wine some of us are in love and some us can’t be.  We break off spinning in all directions and haven’t stopped since.  And on top of it all is a paranoid sticker in his pink briefs.  Make of it what you will.

a small sticker with paranoid written on it as well as a graffiti that is all words

below: Posing at the end of the alley

three people taking selfies at the Portland Street end of graffiti alley

below: Set-up for a selfie

a man has set up a tripod to take a selfie of him positioned between two large faces painted in an alley

below: More of someone else’s selfie, this one in the partial darkness.

side view, man posing in a doorway in graffiti alley, top part of him is in dark shadow

below: Smoke break

an older man in a fedora sits on a ledge covered with street art as he smokes a cigarette

below: An uber5000 painting of blue cat painting a yellow birdie with a predatory camera bearing down on them.

street art by uber5000, a yellow birdie, a blue cat and a characterization of a camera as a face with large mouth and sharp teeth, also with long tongue sticking out. words say gimme a break clik clik clik

below: We are all human by Kaun

below: More sharpie words, this time about the atomic power of prayer.   Oh dear, I googled it and it’s a thing.

words written in sharpie on green and yellow graffiti

below: Paper paste-up telling us to eat more or proclaiming the presence of eatmore?

…murals that is.

construction fence around a building being built, also a small beige house with white trim. Between the two is an entrance to an alley, there is a mural on the wall of the house, in the alley

On Euclid Avenue just south of College there is a lane that runs towards Palmerston Avenue.   I am not sure if it has a name (Paese Lane is the extension of this lane on the other side of Euclid).   As you can see, there are now some murals in this lane.

murals in an alley,

below: Pinks and blues combined in a mural by Getso

a mural of black lines making circles and other irregular shapes filled in with pinks, purples, and blues

below: An unfinished mural by Adrian Hayles

partially finished mural by Adrian Hayles, in yellow, a face and some text

below: A portrait of Greta Thunberg by Meaghan Claire Kehoe.

mural in an alley, large portrait of Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenager advocating for action on climate change, painted by Meaghan Claire Kehoe

below: A dark haired woman in a blue head scarf with a purple conehead flower by drippin_soul aka Kalkidan Assefa

mural my drippin_soul of a woman in blue head scarf beside a large pinkish flower

below: Raccoons have taken over this part of the alley! A mural by Emily May Rose

raccoon mural by Mily May Rose, raccoon on top of garbage cans, climbing on roofs, spray painting, inside garbage bins

two raccoons from a mural by Emily May Rose,

below: (across the lane from the ones above) This little green guy is up to no good!  Great ready for an explosion!  Perhaps life’s a blast?

small green guy with big ears painted on a wall, orange shirt and blue pants. Hands on a trigger to start an explosion

 

Yesterday was not the first time that I walked the Milky Way; I have blogged about it a few times, mostly recently two years ago in July 2017.  What surprised me most this time was just how little has changed.  A lot of murals and paintings were done in 2013 and they are still there.

below: The two horses at the west end of the alley

mural street art painting of a horses's head and neck in Milky Way alley

mural street art painting of a horses's head and neck in Milky Way alley

below: A one eyed monster, melting ice cream cone figure with big black boots.

large gate (or garage door) in an alley painted pink with a painting of a one eyed monster on it

paint peeling off wood fence, street art painting only partilly still there

below: A star that has lost its shine.

faded street art, wood grain of wood fence showing through. pink star with black sides to look 3 D, outlined in yellow

below: Unused and overgrown

a door covered with graffiti that is closed, greenery is starting to grow upo and around the door, painted murals on both sides of the door that are difficult to see

below: Someone’s not pleased.

woman's face as part of a mural in Milky Way alley, text mural around her

below: Kaos in the alley.

black door and wall in Milky Way lane, with graffit on the door, painting of two spray paint cans on the right side of the door, kaos brand. text graffiti on the left side in orange and white

below: Dinosaur riding.

old mural on a wall in Milky Way alley, a young girl is riding on the back a dinosaur, with words that say was last night they were here

below: Rafiki from ‘The Lion King’ still guards the door but his words may be lost to time.

painting of character from Disneys Lion King on door in alley, with paintings of little aliens across the top of the building, ivy growing on the walls

below: This mural was ‘defaced’ (although the faces weren’t touched LOL) shortly after it was painted.  The black letters on the middle woman have been there since at least 2017.

part of a mural of 3 nude pink and purple women, tall and skinny by palm trees, orange background, in an alley, the women have been painted over in white to cover breasts

below: This was the only street art piece painted in 2019 that I saw.

text graffiti mural in oranges and reds on blue background, in an alley, painted in 2019

text graffiti mural in pinks and reds on blue background, in an alley,

old dark door with entrance sign over the top, with lots of graffiti on the door, mural painted on walls beside the door

below: Not the best seat in the house.

pale blue door with graffiti on it, a blue rubbish bin and chair in front of the door

Follow the pointy fingers!

4 black and white stencils of hand and fingers pointing, on the sidewalk, pointing towards a mural on a wall

In a Kensington alley just north of Dundas there are several new faces.

two large faces painted side by side in an alley

below: A very bright face by Curtia Wright

large face mural on an exterior wall in an alley, in bright fluorescent oranges and blues, wearing a large floppy hat

below: An up close look at ‘Lovely’ by ahayahisone (aka Philip A. Saunders, or P.S.)

close up of a face in a mosaic like style with shapes of different colours making up the skin, green eyes, red lips, by Philip A. Saunders, called Lovely

below: A portrait of Philip Saunders by luvsumone (aka Moises Frank)

portrait of a man in shades of brown, orange and purple, with a hat, by luvsomone, a mural in an alley

A Poser bunny face and a companion mini happy face too

a black on silver poser bunny painting on a wood fence in an alley, a little happy face is in the top left corner of the picture

Bonjour from the future

black woman's head in space helmet of clear glass, futuristic clothing around her neck, Jamaican flag painted on her collar, purple lips

This one looks very much like it’s another P.S. painting.

male head in many different colours

Not as bright, but still surviving in the lane, are a couple of older faces

faded, on an old wood fence is a profile picture of a woman that is faded, the wood grain comes through very clearly, some peeling paint on the edges

on a fence that is vertical slats of wood, a portrait of a woman in blue

Mario sticks his head above text graffiti that says flyguy

head of Mario from the Nintendo game peaks over the text graffiti

“Keep yo head out the clouds” to which someone has responded.  At first I thought the response was “Nah, Rock that cloud.” but on closer inspection I see that I am wrong.  I like my answer better!

wood fence painted red with yellow words that say Keep yo head out the clouds, with a couple of white clouds, one with green eyes and a nose and mouth

on a wood fence, a drawing in white pencil of a man in a tie, beside him are the words cloudy daze.  above him are two clouds

In Graffiti Alley to be more specific.

Recently, a few pasteups have appeared in Graffiti Alley that are either text based or have a lot of words written on them.

One series consists of posters with sayings credited to A.J. Maldo whose instagram page calls the work “Poetry for the Mind, Body, Soul”.  You’ll find many more of these positive messages if you follow the instagram link.  I saw three in Graffiti Alley yesterday. 

a poster with a saying or perhaps poes credited to A.J. Maldo

“A simple notion to reveal an ocean, without commotion, you can swim in stride if only you tried, even in times of waves, be confident, you have what it takes.”

.

a poster with a saying or perhaps poes credited to A.J. Maldo

“Dig in deep where beauty grows, see in you where the magic rose, your soul is at stake, no time to waste, choose your fate, inside it waits.”

.

on a wall in Graffiti Alley, a poster with a saying or perhaps poes credited to A.J. Maldo, with a woman in a turquoise sari walking past

“It’s not easy realizing that you’re the one who has been holding you back this entire time.”

The next paste-up, seen up high on a wood utility pole, is by hnr_hnr (aka Henrique Nobrega from Brazil).  You probably recognize the girl in the picture.  I am not sure what the words say but the text starts with “girl” and ends with “half woman”.    A lot of Nobrega’s paintings and stickers involve words.

on a wood utility pole, a picture of the girl in the Vermeer painting with words written part in English and part in Dutch over her face

below: The woman and the text/symbols below her are both by Nobrega.  The words talk about ups and downs and enjoying the ride in this cosmic world.

six paper paste up graffiti pieces, four with mens faces in profile with top of head missing but eye beside the chin, one with black woman in profile with yellow over her face, and one with words and symbols

And last is this hand written note, a poem.   By ending with this one, I am ending on a down note but c’est la vie, swim in stride, it’s all part of the ride.

hand written note on white paper written in pen, pasted onto wall in Graffiti Alley

A Thought without Warmth
More powerful a trauma
a wound of fright
Most and all the sadness
in the darkness with
no light
To be alone
alone in the night
[a drawing of an open book of paper matches]

***

I am me!

Recently, Art Eggleton Lane, south off Harbord Street, was the site of the third annual butterfly laneway painting project organized by Nick Sweetman with help from StreetARToronto and the David Suzuki Foundation.

below: Putting the finishing touches on a mural that was a collaboration between Nick Sweetman and Christina Mazzulla

Nick Sweetman on a ladder adding the finishing touches, with spray paint, to a large mural of butterflies on the side of a garage in a lane. Another ladder leans against the same wall, boxes and can of spray paint on the ground. On the same garage, there is a colourful mural on the garage door

three butterfly murals on three garage doors in an alley

below: Bird on a branch with butterflies in the background by luvsumone, muisca, and Javid Jah.  This mural is on the same garage as theone with the three butterflies on the left in the photo above.

painted mural in a lane, butterflies behind a large bird

spray painted mural in a lane, purple butterfly,on bright green, covering two doors

below: Black line butterflies on a wood fence by Oriah Scott

spray painted mural in a lane, butterfly and circle, on wood fence, by Oriah Scott,

below: This mural gives the impression that the butterfly is as vast as the universe, flying with the stars.

a very large butterfly on a mural on a grage door, wild colours in blues and red, It looks like the butterfly is superimposed on the whole universe

below: She becomes a butterfly in orange and pink, by Anya Mielniczek

spray painted mural in a lane, woman lying on her back, orange face with pink features,

below: In the foreground, a rainbow wasp moth by @drippin_soul aka Kalkidan Assefa

butterfly murals painted on garage doors in an alley

below: Butterflies in bubbles in a futuristic world by Sadar aka blazeworks

painted mural on a garage door in a lane, butterfly,

below: Butterflies and milkweed by Mique

painted mural in a lane, butterflies and milkweed plants

below: Chris Perez working on his mural

a man on a short ladder spray painting a mural on a garage door in an alley, Chris Perez

below: Sunset mural by @roshnisart aka Roshni Wijayasinha

sunset mural in pinks and blues by Roshnisart

below: Another face, with eyes closed as the butterflies flutter around, by @curtia aka Curtia Wright

mural on a garage door with large pink face, eyes closed, butterflies flying around

below: Triangles put together to form a butterfly, by CTR (aka Christian)

two butterfly murals in an alley

below: Another butterfly mural, this one is by Pascal Paquette

butterfly mural by Pascal Paquette

below: A multitude of butterflies around another pink face by MCK Studios aka Meaghan Claire Kehoe

spray painted mural in a lane, butterflies, lots of butterflies around a pin face by M C K studio

below: An abstracted butterfly (or more?) by Jacquie Comrie

painted mural in a lane, butterfly, very abstract, by Jacquie Comrie

below: Two monarch butterflies on a bright blue background, each with a flower of its own, by Leyland Adams

a mural with two monarch butterflys by a flower, bright blue background, garage door

below: A butterfly amongst small red flowers, by Phillip Saunders

small red flowers growing in bunches, in a mural, along with a butterfly, on a garge door

below: A stylized and very angular butterfly by Andre Kan

monarch butterfly, mural in alley

below: A gnarly yellow creature by Braes

braes butterfly mural on garage door

gigantic butterfly head and antenae

stylized butterfly with lots of colours and spots, on a garage door

below: An orange tiger lily flower with both a butterfly and a hummingbird interested in it, a mural by c_mack2.0 aka toner2

mural on a garage door in an alley, large purple and black butterfly, an orange tiger lily flower and a hummingbird

painted mural in a lane, butterfly in pale blue behind a man's head. Man in oranges and blues, wearing sunglasses

below: Large yellow butterfly

spray painted mural in a lane, large yellow butterfly,

The previous two butterfly laneway projects are
2018, Felstead Lane
2017, Butterflyways, by Garrison Creek Park

a mother and daughter walking down an alley