Posts Tagged ‘Yonge St.’

The other day I discovered that there is a small gallery on the 3rd floor of Ryerson’s School of Image Arts.  If you want to find it too, it’s in a building that it’s in is attached at the ground floor level to the Ryerson Image Centre on Gould Street.   At the moment, there is a small exhibit of photos by Avard Woolaver.

the back of a man looking at a wall in a gallery, old photos of Toronto

below:  The photos are ones that Woolaver took in Toronto in the late 70s and early 80s.

old photos of Toronto from the 1980s by Avard Woolaver.

below: This photo is one of Woolaver’s – it is looking towards the northwest corner of Spadina and Queen Street West.  For those of us who lived in Toronto at the time, it’s a bit of nostalgia.  Somethings are very familiar – the older TTC buses, the car styles, and a lot of the architecture, for example.   This photo in particular lends itself nicely to the game of ‘Spot the Differences’….. compare this with

photo by Avard Woolaver of Toronto in the 1980s, this view is the north west corner of Queen and Spadina

below: …..this. Here is the same intersection, at a similar angle, last week.   The large brick building is still there but without a billboard.   The poles are no longer wood but they are covered in posters and remnants of posters – so no change there.    The street signs have been updated and there is now a streetcar lane in the middle.   All in all, I was surprised how little had actually changed in 30ish years.

the northwest corner of Queen and Spadina in 2018, pedestrians, buildings, street scene

below: I found this photo online (originally from the Toronto City Archives, 1950?) but before we can play another round of ‘Spot the Differences’, we have to identify these buildings?  Any ideas?

vintage photo of 357, 359, and 361 Yonge street, black and white, 3 storefronts,

below: Here is the same location in the 1980’s (not a photo from the exhibit).  Not too many changes.   The building that housed George Richards Men’s shop, 361 Yonge Street, was replaced by a dull and boring two storey brick building but the other changes were just to the facades and the owners/tenants.   The tavern is still a tavern and the drug store is still a drug store.  The large brown building on the top right that you can only see part of is Ryerson College.   Unfortunately the Wrigleys ghost sign on the taller building on the left has been covered.

357, 359, and 361 Yonge street in the 1980s including the Zanzibar tavern

photo source BuzzBuzzNews online

below: Fast forward another 30 years.  The Zanzibar is all bright lights and dazzle while the building that housed the drug store is now for sale.  Ryerson is now a University and has expanded out to Yonge Street – that’s the large blue building in case you are not familiar with the area.

Yonge stree, easy side, just north of Dundas, about 357, 359 and 361 Yonge Street including the Zanzibar Tavern. The blue glass wall of Ryerson University behind the Zanzibar,

below: If you pull back a bit, and look just a bit farther north on that stretch of Yonge Street, you’ll see that there are many empty buildings

yonge street, between gerrard and dundas, most storefronts are closed and boarded up waiting for redevelopment of that stretch

below: … including what was until recently the XTC clothing company.  It looks like it has gone through a number of ‘renovations’, not all of which were good.  Some traces of its original brick facade can be seen at the top but at street level it is (was?) a mess.

empty two storey building, once was X T C clothing store

 There is a plan to build a 98 storey mixed-use building on this site including just over 900 residential units ranging in size from 520 to 2000 square feet.    It will be the tallest residential building in Canada.   In the promotional material for YSL Residences, as they will be called, is this: “The epitome of luxury living, designed to elevate the fortunate few who will call it home.”

 

below:  Back to Ryerson, also on the 3rd floor of the School of Image Arts, there was a small series of photographs like this one hanging on the wall in the hallway.  There was no sign as to the name of the artist that I could find either on the wall or online.   I quite like the technique and the resulting image.  Two ideas melded into one.  Two time frames in one frame.  Two artistic styles combined to create another.

a photograph on a gallery wall, a hand holding a photo printed on glass in the middle of another photo, superimposed landscapes

If you are interested in Woolaver’s work, you can find more on his blog.

Twice this week I have come off the subway at Dundas station, and twice I have come to the surface to the sound of protest chants.

The first time it was a Free Tibet march as it proceeded up Yonge street.

a police man, with back tothe camera, stands in the middle of the street to block traffic as a Free Tibet march passes by on Yonge Street, protesters with flags and signs,

below: “Don’t forget Mr. Lingsta Tseten Dorjee, activist for non-violence.  It’s been 5 years since we lost Lingsta Tseten Dorjee”.   The banner then goes on to list Dorjee’s five demands including the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet.

a group of young men marching in a protest, Free tibet. carrying a banner with a lot of words in both Tibetan and English, one is wrapped in a Tibetan flag, some are wearing free tibet hats,

below: More protesters with signs and placards. “Free Shokjang now”.  Shokjang is the pen name of a Tibetan blogger who was detained by the Chinese authorities in March of 2015.

people carrying protest signs, free Shokjang now, release the panchen lama

protesters walk up Yonge Street with Tibetan flag and signs, one man has a megaphone

This afternoon, it was blue flags that I saw.  They are the flags of East Turkistan, also known as the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China.  On a map you’ll find it as Xinjiang in the most westerly part of China, right next the the “stans” that became independent after the break up of the USSR (Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, etc).   The name says autonomous but there is no self-rule or self government for the Uyghurs. 

For a brief time in 1949 it was an independent country but it was invaded by communist China that same year.   Historically, East Turkistan is part of central Asia.  The people are not Chinese but are more closely related to the Turks.  The Uyghurs are the indigenous group of East Turkestan.

below: “Stop forced abortion, Freedom for East Turkistan”

women holding the blue and white flag of East Turkestan, also a sign that says stopped forced abortion in East Turkistan, wearing head scarves

below: “Islamic scholar Mohammed Salih killed in Chinese concentration camps.  We want justice.” Muhammad Salih Hajim, 82, died in custody back in January, about 40 days after he, his daughter and other relatives were detained in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang province.    They were held without charges being laid.   He was the first to translate the Quran into Uyghur.

a black man with a suitcase has stopped to talk to people protesting for a free East Turkistan, he is pointing to one of the signs and a man is explaining something to him

at a protest for free East Turkestan, protesters hold a banner that says China, Stop Massacre of Uyghars

Also today, and just around the corner… A few minutes later I ran across another protest.  This one was at the corner of Gould and Victoria streets, at Ryerson University.   It was a quiet, civilized affair – more like a dance than a protest.

below: Both sides of the right to abortion debate were present.

people protest for and against the right to have an abortion.

below:   The anti-abortion sign would be turned, the ‘file not found’ sign would be moved in front of it, repeat every couple of minutes.

protesters at a right to abortion protest, anti and pro sides, both with a large sign.

below: It seemed to be a debate or a dialogue rather than a protest even though the people involved might disagree.   For such an emotional and polarizing subject they were being respectful and engaging.  At least they have the right to protest…. and to counter protest.

protesters at a right to abortion protest, anti and pro sides, both with a large signs.

 

Last November I blogged about a large 22 storey mural on Yonge Street just below College (music makers on Yonge ).  This mural was by Adrian Hayles and it includes many Canadian music icons.   Recently, Hayles has created a matching mural of the same size on the other side (south side) of the building at 423 Yonge Street with portraits of more Canadian musicians.

tall mural, 22 storeys tall, on the side of a TCHC apartment building in Toronto, by Adrian Hayles, portraits of Canadian musicians such as the band Rush, Carole Pope and others

Rush, Goddo, the Band, David Clayton Thomas, Lonnie Johnson, Selome Bey, Carole Pope, Cathy Young, Jay Douglas, Kim Mitchell, Mandala, and John and Lee and the Checkmates are all shown in the mural.  It is best seen if you are walking north on Yonge Street although some trees partially block the view.

Canadian musicians on a wall, mural by Adrian Hayles,

part of a music mural, a trumpet player, male, with graying hair,

part of face and hands on a mural with a nesting pigeon beside it. It looks like the hand is reaching for the pigeon.

music mural,

bottom part of mural, guitar player and band dressed in white suits with black stripes, black pointy toe shoes, wall is behind two orange and black cones.

The mural was commissioned by the Downtown Yonge BIA,

person with rainbow face paint, rainbow rimmed sunglasses and a rainbow flag draped over her back

It’s Pride weekend here in Toronto with its many activities including the usual parades.  Yesterday was the Dyke March.

people walking in the dyke march, colourful clothes, floral shorts, polka dot top, sailor hat, flags, beads,

a woman is on another person's shoulders so she's above the crowd walking in the dyke march. She is holding a sign that says happy pride

a mother leans over her young daughter who is sitting in front of her on a bike, Small rainbow flag is on the handlebars

below: As in previous year, the motorcyclists led the parade.

dykes on bikes motorcyclists at the start of the parade, dyke march, at Yonge and Bloor

a small white dog with a little hat on its head, head resting on person's shoulder.

leather pants and belt, with a person's hand on bum (with black fingernails). harness on top with nothing under it, partially bare back

waiting for the dyke march to begin, two people by their motorcycle, one is in leather shorts and has angel wings made of rainbow coloured feathers

laughing women holding up a banner in support of trans people

people walking in the dyke march. one is holding a young girl who is wearing a pink dress, one is bare breasted

torso from the side of a person in a lacy black bra with a large tattoo on upper and lower arm. Upper arm tattoo is a woman's head with the words live deliciously written under it

a volunteer wearing a yellow tshirt stands in the middle of yonge street facing the dyke march parade that has stopped just up the street, people are lining the sidewalks to watch the march

a woman drummer, She is wearing a tshirt that says no a la homofobia. walking in dyke march

a muslim woman in a black head scarf takes pictures on her phone at a dyke march. a woman in a bikini top is clapping as she walks toward the camera

dykes on bikes stop in the parade for a photo op. one woman is topless with a bicycle painted on her chest.

a young woman in the dyke marching is holding up a sign that says Humber, we are proud

two women, in profile, watching the dyke march on yonge street, pink sunglasses

long haired woman holding rainbow flag, wearing sunglasses

a middel aged man in a tie dyed shirt with a big happy face in the middle of it, stands by a police car as he watches the dyke march

a group of people sittingo n the sidewalk on Yonge street as they watch the Dyke March. One woman is topless, two women are on cellphones

people on roller blades at the start of the dyke march. a woman holds a sign that says my pride includes the police

a woman in rainbow scarf, and police hat, holds a sign that says thanks first responders

women in a dyke march, one is holding a sign that says kittens against trump

three women walking together in the dyke march

a young man with a flower garland in his hair (paper flowers)

a couple - one is a purple wig and sunglasses and the other in a straw hat with sparkles glued to her face in the shape of a thin beard

Many people walked and danced, clapped and chanted, as they paraded down Yonge Street on Saturday to start the annual Festival of India weekend.

The parade is similar to an annual procession (Ratha Yatra) that has occurred for centuries in the city of Puri, India as part of a Hindu festival associated with the god Jagannath.  Here in Toronto, as in Puri,  three chariots constructed to look like temples are pulled through the streets in a procession from one temple to another.    Each chariot carries a richly decorated representation of a god, first is  Jagannatha (another name for Krishna or God) and then his brother Baladeva and his sister Subhadra.   The chariots are pulled by people and the procession symbolizes the pulling of the Lord into our hearts.

In Puri, this Ratha-Yatra procession continues to attract over a million people every year.  In Toronto, the numbers aren’t quite that high!

a police car drives slowly in front of a parade as it makes its way down Yonge Street

people walk behind a yellow horizontal banner that reads Festival of India, Join us at Centre Island.

two women in sarees are pulling on a large rope in a parade. In the foreground, a man is pulling on another rope.

a group of young South Asian women walking in a parade. One of them has her face decorated with paint. In front of them is a group of young men in yellow tops and white bottoms, one has a drum.

South Asian, Indian, women, in long colourful sarees dancing as they move down Yonge Street in a parade

some older people dressed in white riding high in the chariot float in the Festival of India parade, others walking in front and pulling ropes to make the chariot move.

South Asian, Indian, women, in long colourful sarees dancing as they move down Yonge Street in a parade, lifting their skirts a little bit as they move

people walking in front of one of the chariots in the Festival of India parade in Toronto

a large blue wheel that is holding up a chariot float in the Festival of India parade, people walking beside and behind it as they walk down Yonge Street

lifting the red rope that separates the parade from the traffic, women dancing and clapping and walking as well as other people, pulling ropes to pull the chariot in the parade

Open Streets,
Yonge and Bloor Streets,
Sunday 16th August 2015

 

looking south on Yonge St. from Bloor street on a morning when no cars allowed. There are people walking on the street. There are also two kids with pink balloons.

Two men wearing red T shirts are riding their bikes on Yonge street, passing a woman who is using chalk to draw a floor on the street

A young boy is playing with a hula hoop in front of a sign that says Give It a Try

below: Slow bike race

A man is riding his bike as slowly as possible and still stay within a narrow path as part of a slow bike race. Other people are standing beside their bikes and watching him

A man is skateboarding on the street

A group of adults and kids are doing the limbo with a long rope on the street on a day when the road is closed to traffic.

A couple is pushing a stroller up Yonge St. past some of the stores. No cars on the street

A few people walk on the streets, two bikes also, the bikes have pink balloons attached to them, they are on Yonge Street, just south of Bloor in front of the construction on the west side of Yonge, the lower storey of old brick stores is boarded up, the upper storeys are still visible

A young man is standing in a doorway beside a hair and nails shop on Yonge Street.

Two women are jogging, and other people are walking, on Yonge street on a Sunday morning at Open Streets Toronto so there is no traffic.

#OpenStreetsTO

The intersection of Yonge and Dundas as a location for a few wedding pictures!

A quick google search shows that it’s not the first time a couple has chosen this location to shoot a few wedding pictures but it’s the first time that I have encountered it!   Yesterday afternoon….

The bridegroom in his black suit dips the bride in her white wedding dress in the middle of a pedestrian crossing across Yonge St. at Dundas in TOronto.
A bride and groom are standing on the corner of Yonge and Dundas streets in Toronto.  They are talking to a woman in a white dress who is organizing the wedding photo shoot.

A bride is standing in the middle of an intersection in downtown Toronto, wearing a long white wedding dress, she has her arm up and is beckoning to the groom.