Posts Tagged ‘Bay St.’

Summer in Toronto.  Those days where it doesn’t matter where you walk, you will always encounter something interesting.

This weekend is the Taste of the Middle East festival at Yonge Dundas square, one of the many ethnic based festivals in the square over the summer.  As usual, there were performances, activities, and food.

woman in a pink top and sunglasses turns her head towards the camera with a big smile, behind her is a performance on a stage and a man in an orange baseball cap clapping with his hands above his head, at Yonge Dundas square Taste of the Middle East festival

Products like date syrup were also available.

a man stands behind a display of bottles of date syrup that are for sale at an outdoor event

4 women watching a performance on an outdoor stage, three are wearing head scarves, and two are laughing

below: Young artist at work at Yonge & Dundas.

a young black boy sits on a chair at Yonge and Dundas and paints small pictures while people stop to watch him

below: Adelaide Street was blocked between Yonge and Bay all weekend for a film shoot involving a large number of police cars, police officers, and dummies that look amazingly like real police officers.

part of a film set on Adelaide, a red pick up truck with propane tanks in the back, with another tank wired to the back of a white panel truck

below: When the Netflix series ‘Zeus’ comes out, you can play spot the Toronto locations!

looking through the window of a restaurant with two empty tables, to a scene where a film set is setting up to shoot a scene involving exploding buses and police cars

blurry picture of peoples' legs and feet and shoes as they walk on a sidewalk

below: In the Allan Lampert Gallery at Brookfield Place is an art installation “Into the Clouds”, four large, happy inflatable clouds created by ‘Friends with You’, a Los Angeles based group.   They bring a positive message of light, love and happiness.

art installation in Brookfield Place of 4 large white clouds, three of which have happy faces on them, suspended from the ceiling over the escalator from the lower level,

below: In front of the RBC building at the corner of Front & Bay.

three people in front of the R B C building on Front St.., with its gold coloured reflective windows, An Asian couple stopped to look up and a black woman taking a picture, reflections of other buildings nearby. All people are wearing shorts

below: Relief sculpture on an exterior wall of the Scotiabank Arena (formerly ACC).  A series of these sculptures were made by Louis Temporale Sr. in 1938-39 on what was then the Toronto Postal Delivery Building.

relief sculpture in concrete on exterior of wall, cavemen scene, with palm trees, three people dressed in animal skins. One is cooking - stirring with a stick in a large pot over a fire, one is standing and shouting with hands cupped around his mouth. A ladder made of wood pieces lashed together leans against a rock

below: At the foot of Bay Street, a TTC bus stops beside the Westin conference centre.  The top part of the concrete building is covered by a large photographic art installation – “Milky Way Smiling” by Elizabeth Zvonar.

a red and white TTC bus stops beside a concrete building with a very large photograph pubic art installation on the upper part of the building,

below: Sitting on Jack Layton’s shoulders

a boy in an orange T-shirt, grey shorts, and black crocs sits on the shoulders of Jack Layton sculpture by the ferry terminal, holding onto Layton's head, and smiling at the camera

below: Broken. A gigantic bubble.

a young boy breaks a very large bubble that a man has made, outdoors

below: An oversized picnic table

a group of people sit on an oversized picnic table painted in camo colours in a park

below: 25 figures in bright orange clasping onto black inner tubes – an art installation by Ann Hirsch and Jeremy Angier call SOS (Safety Orange Swimmers)

two small boats on Lake Ontario, Toronto harbour, pass by the art installation S O S or Safety Orange Swimmers

below: Ahoy matey!  We be rainbow pirates!

a pretend pirate ship, as a harbour cruise boat passes by the public art installation, SOS, or Safety Orange Swimmers

below: The spotlight seems to shine on a sleeping body.  The location is Harbour Square Park inside the large concrete sphere that is “Sundial Folly”  created by John Fung and Paul Figueiredo and installed in 1995.  Whether it’s because of high water levels, or for other reasons, access to the interior of the structure is closed to the public. 

a person is asleep, on back, under a maroon sleeping bag, inside a spherical art installation with a slit in it that lets in light such that sleeper is spotlit

waterfront beside Harbour Square Park, walkway, trees, and boats

below: Queens Quay at the foot of Yonge Street is not my favorite intersection.  It’s not uncommon for cyclists to not realize that there is a red light and for pedestrians not to realize that just because they have a walk signal doesn’t mean that there won’t be a bicycle whizzing past.

woman on a bike cycles through a red light at Yonge and Queens Quay

below:  … and that shape on the sidewalk across the street? That is “Between the Eyes” by Anita Windisman.

cars, cyclists, and pedestrians at an intersection

below: Future buskers

two young girls pretending to make music with large plastic inflatable guitars while a woman pushing a man in a wheelchair look on.

below: The public art at Pier 27 condos on Queens Quay East lies in an elevated garden between two condo buildings. This sculpture is the work of American artist Alice Aycock and it consists of a whirlwind (or tornado) form and what looks like whorls of paper.   Litter blowing from the lake?  It’s title is “A Series of Whirlpool Field Manoeuvres for Pier 27”.

a long white sculpture in a garden in front of a condo

part of a large sculpture, sheets of white material curve and join together like the shape of a rose

white sculpture that looks like a very large whirlwind or tornado in front of a condo building

below: Basketball players on the Esplanade.

a group of boys playing basketball on a court that has a mural of two hands forming a heart shape with their hands, the heart is under the basket, mural is on wall

Sculptures by Ken Lum.

I was walking up Bay Street yesterday when I stopped.  Out of the corner of my eye I had caught a glimpse of a sculpture that I had never seen before.  It is ‘Two Children of Toronto’ by Ken Lum, 2013.

Two children, a boy and a girl, sit opposite each other, some distance between them.

two children of toronto, a sculpture by Ken Lum, two children seated on pedestals, about 25 feet apart, along the side of a walkay, with a concrete building beside them. The children are looking towards each other

What you can’t see in the above picture is that there are words in bronze mounted on the wall.  The words say: “Across time and space, two children of Toronto meet”.  The two kids are looking towards each but not each other.

sculpture, Two Children of Toronto by Ken Lum in a downtownwalkway with a concrete bulding beside it, girl's face

below: Both children are wearing clothes from bygone days.

sculpture, Two Children of Toronto by Ken Lum in a downtownwalkway with a concrete bulding beside it, looking towards the girl, with Bay Street and Canadian Tire store behind

below: But the boy’s clothes are more Chinese looking.

sculpture, Two Children of Toronto by Ken Lum in a downtownwalkway with a concrete bulding beside it, a boy is seated on a concrete pedestal.

After my walk the other day, I started researching Ken Lum.  I discovered that he has another sculpture nearby, and fortuitously, it was one that I took some pictures of back in December.  It is “Peace Through Valour” located at the NW corner of City Hall property.  Winston Churchill is standing close by.

a sculpture called Peace Through valour by Ken Lum, outside on a snowy day. A square piece with a soldier standing guard at each corner. On top of the flat squsre is a model of a town in square blocks (no details on the buildings).

It commemorates the 93,000 Canadians who fought in the Italian campaign of WW2 and was dedicated in June 2016.   A Canadian soldier stands vigil at each corner of the memorial.  The top of the 7 foot x 7 foot square is a topographical map of Ortona, a town in Italy that was a scene of a battle at Christmas time in 1943.  Ortona is on the Adriatic coast and its streets were narrow which made it difficult for Allied forces to liberate the town from Nazi Germany.

two soldiers stand vigil at the corners of a memorial, sculptures,

Money for the sculpture was donated by the Italian-Canadian community.

two soldiers stand vigil at the corners of a memorial, sculptures,

The last block at the south end of Bay Street is closed to traffic at the moment because of the continuing, i.e. never ending, construction on Queens Quay.  In that block there are now three pieces of public art.  The most recent addition is a large photograph by Sarah Ann Johnson that covers a large portion of the west wall of the Westin Harbour Castle Conference Centre.

Very large photograph of a beach scene with sailboats out on the horizon and trees on both sides, superimposed with whimsical drawings of circles and swirls in blues, purples, greens, reds and yellows . It is mounted on the side of a two storey concrete building, the bunker like Westin Hotel and Conference Centre

‘Best Beach’ is a welcome addition to the bunker-like structure of the Westin Hotel.  It is part of this year’s CONTACT photography festival and it is scheduled to remain here until the end of December.  StreetARToronto and Partners in ART also played a role in bringing this project to life.

close up of the lake in a Very large photograph of a beach scene with sailboats out on the horizon and trees on both sides, superimposed with whimsical drawings of circles and swirls in blues, purples, greens, reds and yellows

UPDATED: There is now a youtube video on this installation, produced by the City of Toronto.

 Two small sculptures are also on this block, one on the SW corner of Harbour and Bay and the other on the NW corner of Queens Quay and Bay.  Both are difficult to take photos of!

First, ‘The Wave’ by Ivan Kostov

Public art on a corner called 'The Wave' by Ivan Kostov. curved pieces of coloured metal on top of a greenish pedestal.

Looking up from underneath a sculpture, Public art on a corner called 'The Wave' by Ivan Kostov. curved pieces of coloured metal on top of a greenish pedestal. A highrise condo building is behind.

Second, ‘Nautilius’ by Judith Schwarz

Looking upward from below at a public art installation called 'Nautilius' by Judith Scwarz which is a two dimensional cut out piece of metal of a snail-like spiral, mounted about ten to 12 feet off the ground on square sided metal poles.

Toronto has a habit of cluttering up its sidewalks and public art like this one tends to become just another part of the mess. There is no overall plan. Placement of public art might look great on paper but does anyone take into consideration all the other stuff? Stuff that doesn’t appear on architects’ drawings – the garbage bins, newspaper boxes, TTC signs, phone booths, no parking signs, hydro poles, and such things like that.

Public art installation called 'Nautilius' by Judith Scwarz which is a two dimensional cut out piece of metal of a snail-like spiral, mounted about ten to 12 feet off the ground on square sided metal poles. It is an a sidewalk amongst a lot of other things, TTC sign, condos, construction fences, a parked bike, construction signs etc.

And lastly, I couldn’t resist this little guy who’s stuck on a Bell payphone.

A sticker of a one eyed creature, black drawing on white, is on the blue part of a Bell payphone.

 

On the 19th of April, 1904, a large section of downtown Toronto burned for nine hours.

street map of downtown Toronto showing the buildings that were affected by the fire of 1904.

Map showing the area of Toronto affected by the fire of 1904. Bay Street from the Esplanade to Miranda Street (just south of King Street) was the hardest hit.  At the time, this was called the Wholesale District of the city.

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Historical photo of Bay street after the 1904 fire in Toronto.  There are people on the street.  The street is all mud.  There are many burned out buildings on both sides of the streets.  Brick facing of two to four storey buildings is all that remains.

Aftermath, Bay street, April 1904.

In part, because the fire started in the evening, there were no fatalities. As a result of the fire, 5000 people were left without a job.   In 1904, the population of Toronto was about 200,000 so the loss of employment on this scale had an impact on the city.

a very bright and colourful mural on the back of a brick building,  It shows, in reds, yellows ans oranges the burning of a couple of brick buildings, with flames coming out of the windows.

Mural painted on the back of the building on the northwest corner of College St. and Croft St.  (398 College St.), commemorating the fire of 1904.

Demolition of the ruins left by the fire took many weeks.  On the 4th of May, John Croft died while using dynomite to bring down the remains of the W.J. Gage building on Front Street.  His was the only known death associated with the fire.  What is now Croft Street was renamed in his honour.

The east side of 398 College St., at the south end of Croft St., is painted with a mural as a memorial to John Croft.

corner of a building showing parts of two murals.  On the back wall is the mural depicting the fire itself.  On the side wall is a memorial to John Croft.

northeast corner of the building

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1904

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Burned out brick buildings.  All that remains is part of the front facade of these two to six storey buildings.

Burned out buildings, April 1904

The images of the fire’s aftermath are available online.   The originals are kept at the City of Toronto Archives, located on Spadina Road., just north of Dupont Street.

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