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A series of site-specific temporary sculptural installations utilizing the ubiquitous condo sandwich board advertisements found on street corners throughout the city of Toronto.

These works, installed along Parliament Street between St. Jamestown and Regent Park, playfully nod to the current state of affairs in Toronto's overheated condo and housing market, reference the plywood material that the sandwich boards are comprised of through the design and execution of the works, and also mash and rehash the existing ads to comment on the role of advertising in public space.

See more by Fauxreel (and more in this series).

artist: Fauxreel
location: Toronto


The large-scale portraits in Gaspesia: Les portraits en papier represent former employees of Papiers Gaspesia, a pulp and paper mill founded in 1912 by Percy Milton Chandler in Chandler, Quebec. Named for the mill’s founder, the port city’s economy and social organization depended heavily upon this industry. In 1999, Papiers Gaspesia’s closure was announced and, despite a government-sponsored infusion of roughly $400 million, it is now set for demolition. The closure of the mill has had a profound effect upon the people of Chandler. Widespread unemployment, the permanent and temporary migration of workers outside of the city, the separation of families and subsequent increased rate of divorce, and the ground and water pollution left from the plant are just some of the economic, social and environmental problems created by the closure.

Gaspesia: Les portraits en papier literally puts a human face on the industrial remains of Papiers Gaspesia. Portraits of the former mill and forest workers are installed on the front of the mill and on the mill’s oil tanks. While these men and the story of the mill are well known in the community, the deteriorating mill itself has been the only public memorial to the pride, grief and frustration those affected by the closure feel. The images of these workers now mark the physical structures of the mill and lay claim to its history and to its continuing impact on Chandler. One of the subjects, Serge Soucy, remarked that you could see his “eyes were crying for the mill” when he saw his own 30 foot face on the Papiers Gaspesia’s oil tank.

Gaspesia: Les portraits en papier was commissioned by Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie en Gaspésie as part of their annual photography festival in conjunction with the city of Chandler, Quebec.














See more by Fauxreel.

artist: Dan Bergeron / Fauxreel
location: Quebec, Canada

I've frequently featured Dan Bergeron/ Fauxreel's street work on unurth, partly because I love his aesthetic, but I'm also really into his thought process: he engages the city, its people, communities and the fabric of the buildings. You can read about his approach in the interview I did with him recently.

I'm really happy the 'Face of the City' series that's worked so well outside has successfully made the leap into a gallery context; Dan's created a series of portraits enhanced by the color and character of the underlying wood.

The show opens today (Sep 10th) at Show & Tell Gallery in Toronto.








See more by Fauxreel.

artist: Dan Bergeron / Fauxreel
location: Show & Tell Gallery, Toronto (details here)



















Fauxreel's latest project is a great fusion of art with its environment & the community:

"The Don Valley Brickworks operated for nearly 100 years and provided bricks used to construct many well-known Toronto landmarks such as Casa Loma, Osgoode Hall, Massey Hall and the Ontario Legislature. In 1928 the factory was sold and the name changed to the Toronto Brick Company. This change in ownership also saw the factory reach peak production of 25 million bricks per year.The kilns have been closed since 1984 and the property is currently owned and being revitalized by Evergreen.

With some initial leads thanks to filmmaker Catherine Annau, I was able to make contact with some of the former workers who were employed when the factory shut down in 1984.
I visited each subject at the their home and I shot portraits of these proud men and installed their images in the factory's Kiln Building.

To create the brick pattern, I worked with my assistant, Joe Cornfield, to cut everything out on-site as the bricks were of different sizes and the mortar various widths and heights. An arduous task for sure, but a testament to the men who helped to build Toronto, brick by brick."


See more by Fauxreel.

artist: Fauxreel
location: Toronto












Fauxreel's latest installation, a convincing illusion of abandoned store fronts, is for an exhibition at Toronto's Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA). It is inspired by a project he did with Specter in 2008 called 'A City Renewal Project', whereby they recreated abandoned storefronts 'as artistic monuments and documenting their history amidst the gentrified frenzy of urban change'.

See more by Fauxreel, and my interview with him.

artist: Fauxreel
location: Toronto



 
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