Sunday, February 16, 2020

Toronto Winter Stations 2020

The international design competition and exhibition is back at Woodbine and Kew Beaches in time for Family Day starting February 17 and continuing till March 30. Crews were busy Sunday completing the installations ahead of Monday's opening day. Mirage pictured at top is my favourite.

This is the sixth year of Winter Stations where the winning entries are placed along the water's edge, centered around the utilitarian lifeguard stations spread out along the long, sandy beach. It's one way of getting out to see some culture, while enjoying some outdoor times in the middle of winter. For 2020 there are 4 installations that have been accepted: Mirage by Cristina Vega and Pablo Losa Fontangordo (Madrid, Spain), The Beach's Percussion Ensemble by Centennial College (Toronto, Canada), Kaleidoscope of the Senses by Charlie Sutherland of SUHUHA (Edinburgh, United Kingdom) and Noodle Feed by iheartblob (Vienna, Austria).

For this competition designers will create temporary winter art installations which incorporate the lifeguard towers into the work. Entry is open to everyone around the world and is free to enter. The theme for this year is "Beyond the Five Senses" where our sense of sight, sound, touch, taste and smell interact with and view our environment. Descriptions for the installations are from the Winter Stations website.

"Mirage has been designed to react to the movements of the sun and the people. Depending on where the visitors are positioned, they will see either a red transparent sun setting or a light and bright rising sun laying on the horizon. As they walk closer, they will discover the thin structure that makes these two simultaneous realities possible."

The Beach's Percussion Ensemble - still under construction

The Beach's Percussion Ensemble; "This installation consists of three structures of varying sizes formed of a series of stacked wooden rectangular prisms laid out in a circular shape around a giant steel drum. Where the prisms overhang, metal bells of varying shapes and sizes will hang. Some of the structure’s prisms might also be made into steel drums. The elements of the lake’s environment will release the bells’ sound like a wind chime. Visitors can use sticks chained to the structure to play along with the sounds produced by the lake’s elements. Graffiti artists will also be invited to tag the structure."
Kaleidoscope of the Senses

"Kaleidoscope of the Senses re-purposes the existing lifeguard chair, bringing together a balanced yet dynamic composition of elements which are both a visual and experiential celebration of the senses and a metaphor of the body in space. An open bell tower structure creates clanking metal sounds in the wind, while a diagonal black chimney draws up the aromas of oils set into the beach sand at its base. A horizontal white extrusion reflects the expansive horizon, framing a view of the water and back to the city. This is all underscored by a lateral red beam, establishing a tactile bench within the structure, the only point of physical contact with the observer."
Noodle Feed

"Noodle Feed goes beyond physical senses and creates a shared augmented reality environment where people can interact in new ways and consider that the world is much more than we perceive. The colourful forms and tangible nature of the ‘noodles’ are designed to attract attention, while the rough matte texture of recycled sailcloth contrasts with the soft, springy cushioning of the objects, inviting visitors to move them into chairs, beds and shelters." Workers sew the Noodle fabric together. People walk and sit on the straw filled material which will have a tough time making it through the life of the competition without being destroyed.

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