Sunday, 22 July 2018

Art on King Street

Greetings and welcome to my virtual discovery walk! Today I'll take you on a 2.5 km (1.6 miles) walk, and introduce you to the new public art installations on King Street, between Bathurst Street and Jarvis Street.

King Street is one of the main streets running east-west in downtown Toronto. It cuts through the Financial District, the Entertainment District, and the Fashion District of the city. The King streetcar route is the busiest surface transit route in the city, with about 65,000+ riders per day.

Earlier this year, Toronto launched a competition called Everyone is King to seek out design ideas to create attractive public spaces on King Street for everyone to enjoy. Twelve winners were announced and the winning art projects were installed in the spring. They are all available in time for the nice summer weather.

Here's a closer look at the 12 art creations that visitors can explore along King Street:

1. #WouldYouRatherTO invites physical and digital interactions that bring people together through friendly banter. Answer a "would you rather" question by spinning one of the two-coloured buoys to the colour of your choice. Snap a photo and share your own question with the hashtag #WouldYouRatherTO for a chance to be featured.


2. The Spark invites users to pedal together to light the Spark. Only when all four bikes are in use will the full effect be revealed.


3. The Present Moment includes an eye-catching road mural and country chairs. It invites passers-by to stop and relax in the midst of a bustling city, to observe the lively street and to reflect on the beauty and tranquillity that can be found wherever we seek them.


4. King Street Causeway is comprised of interlocking hexagonal modules at varying heights. During the day, it's a place for pedestrians to sit and relax, By sundown, the illuminated crystals reflect and transmit an infinite colour spectrum catering to Toronto's vibrant nightlife.


5. Ziggy - This painted zigzag tubular steel frame is simple and playful. It hopes to connect and bring people together as the structure allows people to lean on and hang out.


6. Woggle Jungle - Colourful foam noodles are clustered together to create a cheerful environment for rest and play, for adults and children alike.


7. Everyone is (A) Kid aims to engage the child in all of us to rediscover King Street. The bright yellow milk crates create a cheery moment in the daytime, and are softly filtered by the street lights in the evenings.


8. Watch Your Step! is an abstract geometric road mural composed of brightly coloured triangles. The use of colour creates a sense of movement and visual depth.


9. The King \ St exhibits the city's first modular urban green park. It showcases a unique material made from recycled automotive textile waste and enables real grass to grow. When viewed from above, the design spells out "KING ST". At ground level, the letters act as 'rooms' with seating and benches of various heights. Users can also charge their phones while enjoy using Canada's first smart bench.


10. King's Buried Treasure is a road mural that depicts a stream, edged with rocks, pebbles, mud, and brush, resurrecting the lost creeks of King Street. Animal footprints are painted onto the road using a super hydrophobic solution. This animated feature is invisible in dry weather and visible when it rains.


11. Face To Face or Tête à Tête is shaped like boomerangs, in striking blue and orange, one table angles toward the street, and one toward the side walk. It invites users to watch the passers-by or to gather for conversations.


12. Asphalt Poetry is a ground mural. The poem The City by Ronna Bloom is presented on the ground. To see the entire poem and how it looks on King Street, please click here as I didn't get a good photo with my camera. If I'm able to take a good picture later on, I'll update this post to include it.

We've just finished our 2.5 km walk. Do a return trip and we'd get 5K done, no problem! If you don't feel like walking back, hop on the streetcar and rest your feet. This type of discovery walk gets high scores from me for fitness, entertainment, art, social, and travel if you haven't visited King Street recently. I hope you enjoy it.

Which of the above art installation(s) do you like? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

44 comments:

  1. I like the planter boxes - we have aKing Street also full of art!

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    1. I'd love to read about the art on King Street in your city. Thanks, Lydia, for stopping by.

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  2. How amazing is all this vibrant art?! I love interactive art and love that Toronto sees the importance in having this downtown. I think the Spark exhibit is my favorite. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I love that everyone's favourite exhibit is different. Thanks, Kristin, for your visit and comment.

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  3. Love it Natalie and I should do the same for Brisbane. I loved The Present Moment the best. Thanks for sharing and I enjoyed our Visual walk together. Have a fabulous week xx

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    1. Hi Sue - I'd love to read about Brisbane. Isn't the Present Moment a good reminder for us to pause and enjoy the present? Have a beautiful week!

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    2. Hey Natalie, thanks for joining us at #MLSTL, I'm sure the others will enjoy your virtual walk with you. Have a great week!

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    3. Thank you, Sue, for hosting. I'll be glad to have more people enjoy my virtual walk. Have a beautiful week!

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  4. Love the happy feel these types of installations bring with them. Beautiful photos.

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    1. Thank you, Caz, for your visit and kind comment. I'm off to visit your blog.

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  5. I love posts about art installations. There's not much that gets me into Toronto (I'm a country girl), but a walk along King Street would be an exception. Thanks for sharing this, Natalie. Oh, and I liked so many of them, I can't choose a favourite.

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    1. Thank you, Karen, for joining me on this virtual walk. I couldn't choose a favourite either even after I did the return trip :)

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  6. This is so lovely. And judging by the comments above many here agree. What an awful event we just heard about in Toronto. So sad.

    Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek. Next week's optional prompt is "If I Could" Denyse x

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    1. Thank you, Denyse, for hosting and for your kind words. Have a beautiful week!

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  7. The Present Moment and Woggle Jungle are my favourites! Finding art on my travels through the city both here and abroad is something that's guaranteed to ease any pain I might be having in regards to the crowding and congestion in most cities.

    SSG xxx

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    1. The Present Moment is pretty and Woggle Jungle is fun. Thanks, SSG, for joining me on this virtual walk and casting your vote :)

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  8. Wow Natalie, I love this. I liked all of the installations, but I think I would choose the Present Moment and Watch Your Step as favorites.

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    1. Yeah, one more vote for the Present Moment, and first vote so far for Watch Your Step! Thank you, Christie, for sharing your thoughts.

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  9. Interesting, I really enjoyed this city art! Shared on Pinterest :)
    Lori Jo - 50 With Flair
    www.50withflair.com
    #MLSTL

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    1. Thanks, Lori Jo, for your comment and sharing on Pinterest. Glad you enjoyed the art that you saw here.

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  10. I am so sorry for the recent shooting in your beautiful city. Thought of you when I heard the news. Thankful you are safe and thinking of those killed and injured.

    What a fun street! I appreciate the way the art is designed to encourage interaction and conversation and playfulness. Our city is so tax-base poor that we don't have many quality of life projects that get financed and approved. Such a shame because this community, in general, is not exposed to art through any other avenue. Art is just being reintroduced to the elementary schools for the first time since 1988 when I have moved here.

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    1. Thank you so much, Leslie, for thinking of me. The recent mass shooting here is rare and scary. I'm glad art is being reintroduced to the elementary schools in your city. I think art is essential to our well-being.

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  11. Wow, what a wonderful place to go. So cool. Thanks for sharing it with us. #MLSTL

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    1. Thanks, Patrick, for your comment. I greatly appreciate it.

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  12. I love colourful street art Natalie - I think the light up hexagons are my favourite - hopefully they'll still be there if I ever get to visit!
    Thanks for linking up with us at #MLSTL and I've shared this on my SM :)

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    1. Thank you, Leanne, for hosting and sharing this on your SM. The King St Causeway hexagons are very nice after sunset.

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  13. I love street art and street murals. This looks a qurky and very interesting selection. It's great weaving stories around stories. I really liked the King's Buried Treasure :) #MLSTL

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    1. Thank you, Jo, for your comment. The King's Buried Treasure invited me to return after it rained so I could see the animal footprints. It's very neat.

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    1. Thank you, Amy, for your comment.

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  15. What a fun way to get people to visit and interact. I know a lot of down towns are finding fun ways to get people to come and visit.

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    1. I think it's great for both residents and visitors alike. Thank you, Victoria, for stopping by.

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  16. I love this idea. My fave are the coloured chairs and the modular garden with a smart bench. Just fabulous.

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    1. Those two installations are very comfy to sit in. I like them, too. Thanks, Jo, for your comment.

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  17. Wow - thank you Natalie for taking us on this virtual walk down King Street. How gorgeous are the artworks?! Creative and colourful! My favourite is pic no. 3. I adore those seats and planter box. Very colourful, creative and quirky! :-) #TeamLovinLife

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    1. Thank you, Min, for joining me on this virtual walk. I'm glad you like what you saw.

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  18. Isn't street art fabulous. I particular like the King's Buried Treasure. #TeamLovinLife

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    1. It's fun to explore these art installations. Thanks, Kathy, for sharing your thoughts.

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  19. Wow, I love how it's a mix of sculptures and murals etc.... My childhood hometown has recently finished a mural project so I must go and have a look at that! #teamlovinlife

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    1. Thanks, Deborah, for your comment. I'm curious to see the mural in your childhood hometown so please post a photo after you go.

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  20. Every single one is so creative but I think the one I like best is the modular green park. That's such a nifty idea
    visiting via the LovinLife linkup

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    1. Thank you, Suzy, for your visit and comment. The modular green park is environmentally friendly and is very nice to sit in. I like it, too.

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  21. How cool are those colourful chairs! Love it

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    1. They're comfy to sit in and are definitely conversation-starters. Thanks, Leanne, for stopping by.

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