Grow Pulp Wolves

Don’t you know that these are all the rage?  If only there was such a thing as grow pulp wolves.  I was just trying to put the names together from my activities of this weekend.  Toronto is a city full of so many interesting sights and sounds.  I am always in awe of what the human creative mind can invent!

On Friday night I went to the Grow Op event that I advertised in an earlier post.  I was mistaken when I said that our Field Cushion project was going to be exhibited… rather strange, but they just used it for the promotional material and that was all.  It was false advertising I would venture to say.  The event was a lot of fun, but I must admit I was disappointed.  It wasn’t anything new really and it wasn’t about exploring landscape and place like I thought.  Nope, it was a plant version of Come Up To My Room.  Rather than questioning what landscape is and can be, it was a series of metaphorical artworks and objects that incorporated plants.  Blah.  In fact it was only the Waterloo team F_rm Lab that managed to try anything of the sort, but even then it still looked too much like a decoration to me and not a landscape.  It didn’t have any power over the space because the busy lobby of the Gladstone overpowered any effect it could have had.  My favourite piece of the evening was ‘Fluorescent’ by Jane Hutton and was exhibited in a darkened bathroom.  It was nothing but a black light shining on some sliced sections of branches.  I didn’t know this, but certain species of trees absort and emit different and subtle levels of light.  Even though these branches were simple objects, when they glowed they made the space feel surreal.  They in themselves created interesting landscapes of contrasting patterns of rings, spots, and lines, that if one did not see them sliced in two and exhibited in this way one would never know how much they actually differ.

Neon Wood Plant Lights

This ‘Babylon Light’ by Ryan Taylor is a neat idea.  I also liked the ‘Knitted Garden’ (of which I do not have a good photo) by Mehran Ataee and Dylan Uscher.

The second event of the weekend was on Saturday night when I went with a group of friends to a ‘Pulp Paper Art Party’ organized by Architecture for Humanity.  I was looking forward to seeing how paper could be used spatially in new ways and imagined being in a space surrounded by paper where a person could manipulate it by ripping it, folding it, and drawing on it.  I was also a little disappointed for this event as well (Sorry but I must be the architectural critic).  When they could have done sooo much with recycled paper and created a cool interactive landscape, all there was were little ‘stations’ so to speak.  The only paper item that actually carried through the space were these paper snowflake-remeniscent streamers hanging down randomly in the space.  Maybe there was fire code issues and they couldn’t take it that far?  In my opinion if it wasn’t for the music the event would’ve been a flop.  The live music was FANTASTIC and so was the space which was an old brick industrial building in the Junction neighbourhood.  A group called ‘Lemon Bucket‘ performed and they very appropriately describe themselves as a, quote, “balkan-klezmer-gypsy-party-punk-super band”.


My favourite ‘paper decor’ of the evening were the scraps of paper stabbed onto the antlers of the gigantic stuffed deer head hanging off the center of the mezzanine.  The building was an amazing triple-height space.  Unfortunately we were limited to the ground floor, but got to enjoy the band playing on the mezzanine above us.  Jen & Danielle

Jen and her friend Danielle were visiting for the weekend and came along.  Not only do they look stunning in this picture, I am also particularly proud of how clear they are while there is nothing but movement behind them (hooray for steady hands!).  And it’s true, there were people dancing a mile a minute behind them!

DSCN8026 Sitting Listening

It was particularly cool, when near the end of their performance, the band came down and started playing right in the middle of the crowd.  There was even a point when they managed to calm everyone, got the crowd to sit down, and sang acapella.

We stayed at the event until the music performance had ended, and then headed back to my place.  For my friend Vikkie and I the night was not yet over.  We headed down to the Horseshoe Tavern at Queen and Spadina to see the Ketch Harbour Wolves play.  They introduced a new album with songs inspired by Toronto.  Even though I can never understand the lyrics, I really enjoy the music because it does indeed evoke feelings about places.


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