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Public art pieces unveiled at Concord CityPlace in Toronto


June 22, 2016
by Canadian Architect

Three of Toronto’s latest public art pieces have been unveiled at Concord CityPlace.

Variegation, Gardiner Streams and Drift are the latest pieces to be unveiled by Concord Adex, Canada’s largest residential developer. These works add to Concord Adex’s public art collection and showcase unique and inspiring work by acclaimed Canadian artists Pierre Poussin, Katharine Harvey and Adrian Göllner.

“Our investment in public art is an important part of our commitment to building vibrant and sustainable communities, bringing together elements that shape a modern, complete neighbourhood,” said Gabriel Leung, Concord Adex vice president, Development.

The unveiling will showcase Variegation, the second piece at Concord CityPlace by Canadian artist Pierre Poussin. Inspired by local indigenous flowers, Variegation includes a series of laser-cut light columns, custom public seating and windscreens. Variegation mimics the plants’ blooming process showing different colours of stripes and spots on the leaves and stems of plants as they grow. The piece reflects the area’s history as the community continues to evolve.

“I am continually intrigued by the wonders of plant biology and try to find ways to represent these features in my art. Inspired by plants that once grew in this area,Variegation is a tribute to Toronto’s history as Concord Adex builds its future,” said Poussin.

In Gardiner Streams, Katharine Harvey depicts the movement of the Gardiner Expressway — an integral artery for people travelling in and out of the city. Using a digital camera on low shutter speed, the artist photographed the nearby highway at night with its relentless stream of cars. She collaged these blurred images together in a painterly manner, to echo the surging motion of the highway.

“Part of my creative process is taking aspects of daily life not conventionally considered beautiful and trying to make them magical,” said Harvey. “Gardiner Streams is my interpretation of something many take for granted — an expressway that breathes life into the city every day.”

“The concept for Drift was inspired by the design of the Spectrum and Quartz towers — it’s clear the project team saw the potential for enhancing the visual relationship between the two by adapting the roof lines,” said Göllner. “Drift takes full advantage of this design to create further cohesion between the buildings.”

Glazed sections at the top of each tower are aglow with slowly evolving cycles of blue, green and magenta illumination. As the length of the cycle is slightly different on each tower, the colours move gently in and out of phase with each other throughout the evening.

Each of the three works contributes to impressive art lighting threaded throughout the public art display at Concord CityPlace. This is known as Warm by Night, which is a public art application on the roofs of the community’s towers. The pieces help illuminate the collection at night and bring these spaces to life.