What is the purpose of those multicoloured statues in the CityPlace park?
The sculptures are one set of several installations commissioned by Concord Adex for its new CityPlace green space. The mammoth condo developer spent $9 million on the park, making it the largest privately funded public art exhibit in Canadian history. For the task, the firm chose Douglas Coupland, the author of Generation X and an infamous lover of Lego, Canadiana and all things pop. With the west coast in mind, he designed giant replicas of the bobbers used by fishermen. In summer, water burbles up from the cement between them—perhaps a simulation of the Pacific Ocean. Also adding to the true north ambience is a cartoonish red canoe overlooking the Gardiner, and the Terry Fox Miracle Mile, a running and walking track encircling the park that’s punctuated with poster-sized pictures of our national hero. As for the exact purpose of the bobbers, well that’s liable to provoke heated debate among observers. Marxists might say it alludes to the role of fishermen in feeding the bourgeois inhabitants of the surrounding condos; patriots would probably argue it stimulates public dialogue on Canadian identity; and aesthetes would say it’s art for art’s sake. But the most practical interpretation is likely to come from toddlers, for whom it’s the city’s coolest new splash pad.
• Question from Margie Doverson of Scarborough
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