Winter Stations – Living up to the Freeze-Thaw theme!

For the second year, The Beach is playing host to an international design competition which creates temporary art installations from the permanent life guard stations dotted along the beach. Dubbed Winter Stations, this year’s theme is Freeze-Thaw which, today in particular, seemed very appropriate with the installations proving to be a welcome haven in which to thaw out!

Given that it was such a cold, grey day today, it was great to see so many people out on the beach enjoying the day and the exhibition. (There was even one guy in the lake paddle-boarding today! Now that’s dedication to your sport!) Some of the installations this year include a steam canoe, a rope forest, a fur-lined wooden “bear belly”, and a functioning sauna—complete with hooks on which to hang your clothes if you want to run and take a dip in the lake first (which you’ll see in the pics we saw three guys do!) There’s also a welcoming fire pit area at the Woodbine end of the Beach to chill out in (or rather warm up in!).

While I have to admit I’m not much of a winter-lover, I will say I do love this event…it totally made me want to head to The Beach to check the exhibits out in person. It’s actually a really bizarre experience to be wandering along the beach in the dead of winter with everyone in full winter gear!…especially to then look out and see a dude in the water paddle-boarding! And as for the exhibition, I loved the exploration and the fact that each installation offered a fun little reprieve from the biting wind. And even though it was a grey and windy day today, with every exhibit we encountered and with every picture I took, I actually found myself warming up and really enjoying how beautiful winter could be.

Definitely worthwhile to go and check it out – even if it’s just to get a little fresh air and a break from your winter hibernation for an hour or so!! Just remember to bundle up! (I was well warm on my top half and my feet, but I definitely could have used some extra layers under my jeans!)

The exhibition is on until March 19, 2016.

Fire Place on the beach

The first and last stops on our journey were at the fire place! Designed by Canadian architect Douglas Cardinal.

Fire Place on the Beach

Fire Place by Canadian architect Douglas Cardinal

Steam Canoe

The Steam Canoe, designed by OCAD University, was not quite ready today. But it will be interesting to experience it when it’s all finished!

Steam Canoe

The Steam Canoe, by OCAD University

winter paddle-boarding

Yes, that is someone paddle-boarding in Lake Ontario in February!

winter paddle-boarding

Pushing through some February waves…

Winter Stations - in the belly of a bear

This is a fun installation, and a great place to thaw out! In the Belly of a Bear, designed by Caitland Brown, Wayne Garrett, and Lane Shordee of Atelier One Five.

in the belly of a bear

Next in to the belly of the bear!

in the belly of a bear

Cozy…and no wind!

floating rope

Floating Ropes, designed by Elodie Doukhan and Nicolas Mussche of Atelier One Five

floating rope

Floating Ropes

Winter Stations - view from floating rope

View from atop, Floating Ropes.

Winter Stations - Flow

Flow, designed by Calvin Fung and Victor Huynh of Atelier One Five

Winter Stations - Flow

Flow, designed by Calvin Fung and Victor Huynh of Atelier One Five

lithoform

Lithoform, designed by the Department of Architectural Science, Ryerson University

lithoform

Going into the lithform…

Winter Stations - Aurora Borealis

Fun concept – the tubes are supposed to swing around and change colour when you touch them. Unfortunately I think the cold and wind proved to be a little too much for this one today! Hopefully it will get unraveled and work the way it’s supposed to as the exhibition continues.

Winter Stations - Aurora Borealis

Aurora Borealis, designed by Laurentian University

Winter Stations - dip before sauna

Sauna, designed by Claire Furnley and James Fox. Check out the brave souls on the right who took a quick dip in the lake before heading into the sauna!

Winter Stations - Sauna

Sauna, designed by Claire Furnley and James Fox.

Winter Stations - sauna

The sauna chimney…

winter beach in Toronto

It’s amazing how beautiful winter actually is when you look… (if only it weren’t so cold!)

winter beach in Toronto

Crystal beauty…

The Beach - Toronto

Winter walk on the boardwalk

Fire Place on the Beach

Last stop on the journey was at the fire place again. This time there were only a couple of people there and we could sit on the bench. It was amazing how serene it was just sitting there basking in the warmth of the fire and listening to the crash of the waves against the shore. A lovely way to end the tour and the day.

 

If you like this, see also:

Nuit Blanche 2014 in pictures
Soft Spin – pop-up art installation at Brookfield Place

…….
Carole Wiseman
Helping Clients Across Toronto Love Where They Live
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Posted in Art & the City, In the 'Hood
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