Mayor calls on Torontonians to ‘celebrate winter’ as Winter Stations opens in the Beach

Stimulating pieces of pop-up art by three international teams and three Canadian teams have transformed Toronto’s Beach community, marking the official start on this Family Day of Winter Stations 2019.

Each year Winter Stations tries to pick a theme that is topical and is conducive to multiple interpretations. Migration, the movement from one region to another and often back again, is this year’s theme.

While some people “shiver” at the thought of going outside during these winter months, Toronto Mayor John Tory has used the Winter Stations launch to urge Toronto residents to embrace and celebrate winter.

“Winter comes every year and as much as we all roll our eyes a bit, and I think particularly newcomers to Toronto sometime sort of shiver at the whole thought, it is a season we have [and] it’s a season to get something out of,” Tory told journalists at the launch.

“Thanks to these fantastic artists … we can celebrate this beach in the winter, we can celebrate the artistry, we can celebrate in this year migration.”

Also to be celebrated, Tory said, is the fact that the migration that’s taking place all around the world, often in unhappy circumstances, “has built this city and has built this country and I hope it reminds us that we want to always be a welcoming place where we learn from the difference of people from around the world.”

The 6 designers

The six pieces of art being featured this year are:

  • Above the Wall by Joshua Carel and Adelle York, Boston, USA. The piece positions humans, physically and symbolically, above a barrier constructed around the lifeguard stand at Woodbine Beach.
  • Mind Station by Tomasz Piotrowski and Lukasz Chaberka, Lomianki/Warsaw, Poland, is a pavilion that allows users to lose their physical dimension.
  • The Forest of Butterflies by Luis Enrique Hernandez, Xalapa, Mexico, represents the forests of Michoacán, Mexico, where each year, the insect with the longest migration in the world is received, the Monarch Butterfly.
  • Cavalcade by John Nguyen, Victor Perez-Amado, Anton Skorishchenko, Abubaker Bajaman, Stephen Seungwon Baik, Toronto, reflects the collective spirit of human movement. It depicts people migrating towards something better.
  • Ground² by students at Humber College, is an experiential journey of migration that beckons the user to participate in the ever-shifting human and environmental landscape.
  • Chairavan by artists from Sheridan College in Mississauga, reimagines the lifeguard tower as a migratory species.

Coun. Brad Bradford said Winter Stations is all about bringing art to the forefront, noting that the exhibits are “very special.”

He said Winter Stations is a fantastic opportunity to get people out to enjoy Toronto as a winter city and celebrate the arts and the diversity the city has to offer.

“This for us in Beaches-East York and Ward 19 is about inviting all of Toronto and the region to come down to the Beach and experience it at a time that most of us don’t think about going to the beach,” Bradford said.

“Toronto is a city that’s open, Toronto is a city that’s welcoming, and we’re seeing that here in our exhibits from across the country and internationally.”

The six installations dotted along Woodbine Beach will be open to the public and the exhibit runs until April 1.

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