Archive for the ‘locations’ Category

November came in with a gust of grey and dampness.  So when the sun breaks through for a while it’s time to grab a coat and a camera and get walking even if it wasn’t you planned to do that day.

below: The cube house at the bottom of Sumach Street is still with us. It was for sale early in 2017.  At that time, March 2017, BlogTO published an article about this building that starts with this description: “Based on Dutch architect Piet Blom’s complex of Cubic Houses in Rotterdam, the UniTri structure dates back to 1996”.  It was sold in May 2018 for almost three million dollars.

1 Sumach Street, a building made of three green cubes on point on a white pedestal, 3 apartments.

below: No idea is original.  Seen under Richmond/Adelaide Streets.

a painting on a concrete pillar of an overpass, words, No idea is original there's nothing new under the sun, it's never what you do but how you do it.

below: This guy holding his hands in front of him and wearing a red wizard cap still adorns the corner of the Magic Building on Sumach.  He’s just one of a number of wizards you’ll find there.

a painting of a man with hands folded in front, and wizard cap on, on the exterior corner of a building

below: This was the scene of a large fire back in April 2018.  Three buildings were damaged with the one in the middle being beyond repair. It is now gone.  It’s been a long, slow recovery.

an empty bus shelter on Queen East, behind it is a vacant lot where a building had been destroyed by fire, to the left is a green building with bottom floor window boarded up and a sold sign on it. To the right is an old brick building

below: Another building gone.  This one by choice.

a new three storyhouse on the corner, a vacant lot beside it with blue covering as a new home is being built, other houses down the street after that

below: Colourful porch details.

a front porch painted in red and the steps in red and white stripes, wrought iron railing has parts painted white

below: A photo to document this part of Queen Street East because whether it’s in 2 years or 20, there will be changes.

Queen Stree East at Trefann, looking west along the north side of Queen, two story brick storefronts with apartments above, old brick buildings

variet and convenience store painted bright yellow, white metal grill covers window, lots of signs in and around the window in red letters

Amedae spice market store painted yellow with red trim on doors and windows, a large tree grows in front of the store.

a white BMW vehicle with no front licence plate parked in front of a small old building covered with signs that say we fix computers, cell phones and wireless solutions, etc

refelctions of autumnleaves and other buildings in a corner window of a rug store

two men walk past on the sidewalk

architectural details on old buildings on Queen Street East

Seaton Butcher shop exterioe, old brick building, red trim, Queen Street East

below:  A row of old brick houses at 79 through 85 Shuter Street where a fire has recently destroyed some of the the upper levels and roofs.

 

row of old brick houses at 79 through to 85 Shuter Street where a fire has recently partially destroyed the upper levels and roofs

below: The buildings are empty and boarded up.  This is the southeast corner of Shuter & Mutual.

row of old brick houses at 79 through to 85 Shuter Street where a fire has recently partially destroyed the upper levels and roofs

below: There is a development proposal notice on the buildings. The proposed plan saves the old houses and shows a tall glass building built behind and above them.

development proposal sign on side of yellowish brown brick building that is empty and boarded up.

below: That’s a big drill!

a large drill bit on the end of a piece of construction equipment that's parked in a vacant lot beside a beige building

below: Shuter Street at Church.

looking west on Shuter street at Church, St. Mikes hospital, construction at the NE corner of Shuter & Church, mural by parking lot

below: Looking north on Church Street towards the new buildings that are part of Ryerson University’s expansion.

looking north up Church Street from Shuter towards Ryerson University

below: Steeple, St. Michaels Cathedral

steeple of St. Michaels cathedral

below: Looking west on Dundas towards Victoria Street and Yonge Dundas Square. The cylinder structure is part of the CityTV building.  The outer layer is wire mesh.

 

looking west on Dundas Street towards Victoria Street, large cylinder structure above the street at City News building, TTC streetcar turn with walkway above it, billboards of Yonge Dundas square behind it

BlogTO had promoted a Day of Dead march on 2nd November, starting at Spadina and Fort York at noon.  It was a grey and miserable day but a few of us went to see what was up.  What we found at that location at noon was a few other photographers standing around in a sheltered spot wondering if anything was happening.   At 12:20 we started to leave – and that is when a group of about maybe 20 people dressed like the men below showed up.  But half of them were carrying advertisements for Westjet.  It was just a publicity stunt.  Boo to BlogTO for promoting it as an event.

two men in white face day of the dead decorated, one with sombrero on and the other with the hat in his hand, wearing black suits, white shirts, and red bowties

It has been a long time since I was in that neighbourhood with a camera so perhaps a short walk around would be a good idea.  The new Canoe Landing Centre is taking shape at the corner of Fort York Blvd and Brunel Court.

below: The view from Fort York Blvd

construction of new Canoe Landing Centre on Fort York Blvd, low rise building with sloping roof, tall condo in the background

below: The view from Canoe Landing Park.  The centre also includes includes two elementary schools, Bishop Macdonell Catholic and Jean Lumb Public Schools, and a day care centre.

construction of new school, red and white facade

below: Making use of the park on a grey Saturday afternoon.

men playing soccer on green fake grass playing field in front of Toronto skyline, at Canoe Landing Park

below: Douglas Coupland’s red canoe art installation is still there, jutting out over the top of the hill.

Douglas Coupland's red canoe at Canoe Landing Park sticks out of the edge of small hill, tall condo buildings in the background

below: One of the views from the canoe, cars entering the canyon of highrise glass & steel condos along the Gardiner Expressway.

two tall glass tower condo buildings with the Gardiner Expressway, an elevated road, passes between the two of them, cars on the road

below: Working hard at the library at the corner of Bathurst and Fort York.

a person works at a table beside the window in a library, building sticks out, railway tracks and yard below, with highrises in the background

below: Bathurst Street as it crosses the railway tracks.

a woman walks over the bridge on Bathurst over the train tracks, GO train going westward in the background, as well as taller buildings to the west

below: Chill!  Stay warm until next time!

part of the front of a building that has been painted in red, white, blue, and purple squiggles, with a black heart and a roaring tiger leaping out of the heart, also the word Chill in silver block letters

Today was Climate Strike day…  a Friday where there were rallys and protests to call for action on climate change across Canada and around the world.   Here in Toronto Queens Park was the gathering spot.
at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a group of young people with their home made protest signs, some on brown cardboard, and one on pink bristol board,

By 11 a.m. the park in front of the parliament buildings was quite full and people were congregating all down University Avenue as well.   I wandered (pushed my way?) through the crowd while we waited for some speeches (that almost no one could hear) to finish before the walk part of the day started.   These are some of the signs that I saw and some of the people that I talked to.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a young girl holds a homemade sign that says save are trees, two other girls are with her

two people in costume, one a bee and one a fox (badger?). They have a yellow sign that says If we die we will take you with us. Act now. at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September

below: All eyes on the camera man.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a group of school kids holding protest signs that they've made, but keeping their eyes on a man with a large TV camera

below: People Act Now It’s Critical, PANIC

5 kids, each with a sign. Together they spell panic. each letter is in red on a green circle. The boy holding the C at the end is sitting on the ground

The best thing I heard this morning was one boy who said, “It’s not socialism, it’s a better kind of capitalism”.

 

below: Holding a sign that she made herself.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a girl holds a poster placard that she made herself, it says save our and then it has a picture of the Earth

below: Respect your mother.   There were lots of references to Mother Earth.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a young boy sits on the grass between two women. Behind him is girl with a sign on her back that says Respect your Mother

below: The turtles are only the beginning

a girl has her face showing through a square hole cut out of a piece of white bristol board, sign saying that the turtles are just the beginning, her face is part of the turtle body

below: Change is coming wether you like it or not.  We need real change.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, three girls with pale blue signs, Change is coming,

below: Being interviewed as she holds her climate danger rating sign.

a woman is being interviewed for television, at a climate change protest,

below: Standing with the trees, and partially under the pines.

standing under some pine trees is a woman who is holding up a sign that says standing with the trees

below: Make Ontario Greta again.

a man holds a spiral bound sketch book on which he's written Make Ontario Greta again.

a young girl in a pink jacket stands between a woman with a walker and a man in a plaid shirt and green hat. She is holding a hand drawn protest sign

Roses are dying,
violets are too.
Save our planet,
we’re counting on you.

below: We want a green future

two little girls holding a bristol board protest sign that says we want a green future

below: Every single use item is a time bomb

in front of Queens Park, lots of people in front, crowded out to the street, south side, on road, a woman is sitting on the shoulders of another woman while holding a sign that says each single use item is a time bomb

below: Taking cues from Kermit the Frog, it ain’t easy being green.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a middle age woman dressed all in light green, pants,jacket, and hat, and holding a sign with a picture of Kermit the frog that says It ain't easy being green but we must

below: Continuing with the colour theme… All that glitters is not gold.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a young man dressed in gold and holding a sign that says All that glitters is not gold

below: A common theme today was, “The Earth is hotter than”.  In this case, I think that’s a Korean boy band?  K-Pop? Or something like that?

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, an Asian woman with a sign that says the earth is getting hotter than. At the bottom of the sign are pictures of a Korean boy band.

below: More “hotter than” – this time an imaginary boyfriend.  How can you not smile at that?

three people holding three placards, one says The earth is hotter than my imaginary boyfriend. also one says Change is coming whether you like it or not.

below: Look me in the eye, from up above.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, a girl is on her parent's shoulder. she is holding a yellow sign that says look me in the eye

below: Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone, plus Clean Energy = New Jobs

climate strike, rally for action on climate change at Queens Park, group of people, adults and kids on University Ave

below: Our world is melting

climate strike, rally for action on climate change at Queens Park, a group by the trees in the park, two signs, one with a bear on it and words about melting ice. The other is being held by a woman who is on another person's shoulders

below: Fight climate change or die frying

below: Another theme kept appearing today was an anti fossil fuel stance.  “In 2018 Canada spent 3.3 billion on fossil fuel subsidies”

a young girl holds a carboard sign that has a picture of of a peace sign made with a picture of the Earth

below: This is why we can’t have nice things.

at the climate strike rally at Queens Park on a sunny morning in September, group of young people, including a woman with a cardboard sign that says This is why we can't have nice things

below: Why should I study neuro when we’re all going to die?

climate strike, rally for action on climate change at Queens Park, a young woman with a blue sign poses for a photo being taken by a friend

Another post with more photos from the climate strike are immediately below this page.

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?

Over the span of just a few years I have watched as street art went from questionable legality to mainstream; now it’s jumped to very trendy.  From vilified to Yorkvillified?

man working at a table, with reflections of a mural in the window, looking through the window

below: This large mural was created by Kazakhstan born, Montreal-based, Ola Volo.

mural of a woman with long hair, stylized, in red, yellow and black and white

two murals on two different walls of a building

below: Close up of part of the mural by Whatisadam

close up of a mural, a man and a woman are leaning together for a kiss. Woman has bright red lipstick.

below: Mathieu Bories, also known as Mateo, works on the woman’s blue and yellow head scarf.

a man is on a ladder as he paints a mural of a woman with henna coloured stencils all over her face, and a blue and yellow head scarf,

a man, street artist Mateo, spray paints a mural as he stands on a ladder. He's wearing a respirator, painting with blue paint

shoes on a ladder with the eye of a mural looking at them

below: This OK is coming unstuck, peeling off the wall.  This mural was painted by Ben Johnston whose work often features text that looks 3D

on the side of outdoor steps, a blue mural with the word OK in black and white such that it looks like the letters are curling up at the ends, 3 D effect

below: This staircase, with artwork by Getso, is going to turn into a instagram hotspot.   Her shoes may be famous already!  Actually, I took a quick look through a few possible hastags while writing this post but so far there haven’t been too many images of people posing here.

a young woman sits on the railing of an outdoor staircase that has been painted with street art. A man is taking a pictrure with his phone of her feet against the artwork

below: Across the back wall, above the upper level, is a long mural by Mr. Brainwash that is supposed to look like a wall of graffiti

part of a mural made to look like a wall of graffiti including a mona lisa, a man with a camera in triplicate,

mural made to look like a wall of graffiti including a pink marily munroe, a woman in brown and white dress and bonnet, the word i love you written in red,

below: Up on the scaffolding working on Mickey Mouse and his orange ears, is Xray aka Brian Lanier.

a man in an orange vest is up on scaffolding as he paints a mural, two other men are looking at finished murals

a man sits on scaffolding as he paints a mural, LED spotlights are in the foreground

below: I think that it says love, a mural by Peru143

small mural by street artist peru that says love in very stylized and abstract letters

below: The streaks and splotches of colour are part of the wall that was painted by Risk.  It is also the space surrounding the entrance to the Taglialatella Gallery.  It was this gallery, along with INK Entertainment, that brought together the artists to paint the murals and many of them have pieces for sale in the gallery.   I appreciate that the gallery is supporting street art and that artists can make money from their work but there is a heavy presence of commercialism around this enclave of murals that makes me uncomfortable.

window of gallery with the exterior walls painted in pastel colours

a woman in an art gallery, is standing by two pieces that use neon lights. One is large red heart as part of a painting with an image of Charlie Chaplin meant to look like a wall of graffiti, with a yellow neon light in a heart shape

two pictures on a gallery wall, in red, black and white, on wallpaper that is red and beige intricate floral pattern

mural with a pink marilyn munroe, the words i love you in red, mural, Cumberland private wealth

One part of the city that has changed immensely over the past few years is the area near Spadina and Front streets.  I was in the area last night and had a few moments to spare so I thought that I would take a look at what’s there now.

below: Waiting for the 510 streetcar

back end of a new TTC streetcar, at a stop on Spadina, people waiting, a man is on his phone as he waits, condo behind

below: Looking south on Spadina approaching Front Street.

looking south on Spadina near Front, streetcar stop and shelters in the middle of Spadina, some people waiting for streetcars, 2 small trees, tall condos in the background

below: Many cranes working at the site of the old Globe & Mail buildings on the north side of Front Street, just west of Spadina.

3 cranes at construction site on Front Street where Globe and Mail used to be

below: Intersection of Spadina & Front, looking southwest

looking southwest at intersection of Spadina and Front, condos

below: Looking west from Spadina as it crosses the railway tracks.

yellow metal pedestrian bridge over the railway tracks, looking from Spadina bridge, condos in the background, lots of tracks, no train

below: City Place, south of the tracks.  Red sculpture is ‘Flower Power’ by Mark di Savero.

red sculpture in front of condo buildings

below: On the south side of the railway tracks, east side of Spadina, part of Northern Linear Park.

trees in a small park along the side of the railway tracks, condos behind

below: There is still a parking lot on the northeast corner of this intersection. This image is the view across the parking lot to City Place.

looking across parking lot at north east corner of Spadina and Front towards the traffic and lights at the intersection, billboard, people

below: Reflections in the clear and green glass of a new building on Front Street, just east of Spadina

reflections in clear and green glass

below: Waiting for the light to change

a young man sits on his bike and checks his phone while waiting at an intersection for the traffic lights to change

below: And once we started walking across the intersection, I loved how her skirt moved as she walked.

a woman's long red skirt moves as she walks across the street

a food truck