5 Eye-Catching Art Stations

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #29! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, hot chocolate, or cold drink at my coffee station and let’s chat.

It was a mainly sunny and warm week. Ontario moved to Step 3 of the 3-Step Reopening plan on July 16. This means indoor dining, indoor fitness centres, indoor swimming pools, movie theatres, art galleries, concert halls, conservatories, and more businesses are re-opened with capacity limits.

I enjoyed cycling, walking around town to see outdoor art exhibits and taking photos at different angles. After sixteen months of restrictions and lockdown, fountains with water flowing gave me joy.

Fountains at Nathan Phillips Square.
Fountains and Freedom Arches at Nathan Phillips Square facing Old City Hall.

I’m sharing five eye-catching art stations for the weekend. In each of my photo galleries, I encourage you to click on the “About” photo and read it as it explains the artists’ intentions.

The first four stations are winning designs for Toronto’s 2021 Spring Stations exhibition. They were selected by a jury from a record-breaking 400+ submissions from around the world. The theme of the exhibition, Refuge, asked designers to “reflect on the ongoing pandemic and consider what refuge means to each of us: a shelter, a place of comfort and security, a sanctuary.”

1. ARc de Blob

ARc de Blob.
A colourful arch created by Aleksandra Belitskaja, Ben James and Shaun McCallum, Austria/UK.

2. The Epitonium

The Epitonium.
A leaning structure created by a group of Iranian artists aiming to provide physical shelter with architecture inspired by nature.

3. From Small Beginnings

From Small Beginnings.
Created by Jack Leather and Charlie Leather, UK, From Small Beginnings is made up of an entire tiny forest of seedlings planted on 15 wooden shelves and provides both seating and standing space for spectators to seek refuge. Visitors have taken most saplings by the time of my visit.

4. THROBBER

THROBBER.
A rainbow neon piece made up of 10 colourful rooms and created by Alexandra Grieß and Jorel Heid, Germany.

5. Plant It Forward

This urban garden/ sculpture installation created by John Notten is one of five winners of Toronto’s 2020 Temporary Parklet Design Build Competition.

Plant It Forward sculpture/ urban garden.
Plant It Forward sculpture, street-facing side.
Plant It Forward urban garden with wheelbarrows.
Plant It Forward urban garden with wheelbarrows, park-facing side.

The concept of Plant It Forward by John Notten:

I enjoyed these art stations and their messages. Happy weekend, everyone!

Shared with #LifeThisWeek, #PPAC6, #SundayStills, #ThursdayDoors, #WWE89.

Which of the above art stations do you like? I’d love to hear your comments.

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121 thoughts on “5 Eye-Catching Art Stations

  1. Denyse Whelan Blogs July 23, 2021 / 8:05 am

    Ooh how exciting to be out and about even more now. So good for you and your fellow citizens. What a cool & creative idea this was. I liked Throbber as I am a huge fan of rainbow colours and brights and I like the little trees one too. A city coming back to life. Just the best. Thank you for the link up. Denyse (PS, not whingeing about our lockdown..it’s very necessary but we wish the politics of it all would go away , and many more get vaccinated!!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:05 pm

      Hi Denyse, It’s great to see Toronto coming back to life this summer after a long lockdown. Our vaccination program continues so hopefully we won’t experience any setback. I’m glad you liked the art exhibits. The bright colours of Throbber stood out. Thank you for linking up. Have a nice weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Denyse Whelan Blogs July 29, 2021 / 1:55 am

        Thank you for being part of this week’s Life This Week link up. I enjoy seeing the posts linked by the community of friendly bloggers every Monday …and you are one of those. Next week’s optional prompt is Question. I hope to see you then. Denyse.

        Like

        • Natalie July 29, 2021 / 9:08 am

          Thank you, Denyse. I hope to see you at the upcoming Weekend Coffee Share link-up.

          Like

  2. leannelc July 23, 2021 / 8:27 am

    I think the Epitonium was my favourite Natalie – very nautilus shell like and pretty (and kind of funtional too). Thanks for hosting another great party.

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:10 pm

      Hi Leanne, The Epitonium is an excellent choice. People like to enter and take pictures of it from the inside. I enjoyed reading your informative blog post. Keep smiling. Thank you for linking up with #weekendcoffeeshare.

      Like

  3. Toonsarah July 23, 2021 / 8:38 am

    These are great and I love the overall concept too. Thank you for including shots of the information boards, they were interesting to read. My favourite is the Epitonium as I love the shape, but the Throbber is great too – I never knew that little icon had a name 🙂

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:14 pm

      Sarah, I like the Epitonium, too. Now we have a name for the Throbber icon 🙂

      Like

  4. Wind Kisses July 23, 2021 / 9:30 am

    Loved the throbber and the information about it. Thank you for taking those photos too, my favorite was plant it forward. I large message there! Donna

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:17 pm

      Donna, The Plant It Forward concept is so good for our environment. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Ally Bean July 23, 2021 / 11:13 am

    I like the Plant It Forward. It’s striking and practical. You do see the coolest things!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:21 pm

      Ally, The Plant It Forward concept is so good for our environment. It was great to see it IRL.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:22 pm

      I agreed 🙂 Thank you, Cee, for your comment.

      Like

  6. Maria July 23, 2021 / 12:31 pm

    You’ve been enjoying yourself immensely this week by the look of things! I really like the first photo, you should print that one. The plant it forward idea is awesome! I like the installation with the wheelbarrows a lot. Thank you for hosting the coffee share this week!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:24 pm

      Maria, It’s been a good summer so far. I’m glad you liked my first photo and the Plant It Forward installation. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and linking up.

      Like

  7. Dan Antion July 23, 2021 / 12:41 pm

    These are wonderful photos, Natalie. They’re all great, but I love the freedom arches.

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:30 pm

      Dan, I’m glad you liked my photos. The Freedom arches also look great at night with lights on. I was going to submit this post to Thursday Doors with my tongue-in-cheek thinking that my “contactless” entrances are suitable during covid-19 pandemic 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dan Antion July 23, 2021 / 8:34 pm

        As far back as when Norm was running this challenge, we’ve accepted a wide definition of “door” – these would be welcome 🙂

        Like

        • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:52 pm

          Thank you, Dan. You’re a generous host. Have a great vacation! I have a number of doors to submit in August 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Janis @ RetirementallyChallenged.com July 23, 2021 / 1:37 pm

    I love public art… it’s such a treat to come upon something like that in my travels (even just around town). Although I liked them all, the Epitonium was my favorite.

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 7:35 pm

      Janis, I like the Epitonium, too. It’s surely a treat to see nice public art. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:28 pm

      I like the Epitonium, too. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  9. Lydia C. Lee July 23, 2021 / 4:32 pm

    I love the plant it forward and the rainbow pod….very cool!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:30 pm

      I like the bright colours of those two art structures. The Plant It Forward concept is good for our planet. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  10. rawsonjl July 23, 2021 / 5:13 pm

    Each installation is so neat! I love the greenery of Plant it Forward and the bright colors of the rainbow pods but that Epitonium is so neat structurally!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:33 pm

      I’m glad you liked these art installations. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  11. wideeyedwanderingspoonie July 23, 2021 / 6:25 pm

    What a wonderfully artistic city you live in. I love them all but my favorite has to be the Plant It Forward. Awesome shots, thanks for sharing. 🙂

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:34 pm

      JP, I’m glad you liked these art installations. The Plant it Forward concept is so good for our planet. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  12. Jill Weatherholt July 23, 2021 / 7:35 pm

    I always feel as though I’ve taken a trip after reading your posts, Natalie. I love the pastels colors of ARc de Blob, but really all are magnificent. Thanks for sharing!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:38 pm

      Jill, I feel fortunate to have so much beautiful and interesting art to explore in Toronto. The ARc de Blob has eye-catching colours and interesting details. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  13. smkelly8 July 23, 2021 / 7:45 pm

    Such amazing, colorful art! Thanks for hosting!

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 8:38 pm

      Thank you, Susan, for your comment and for linking up.

      Like

  14. Ju-Lyn July 23, 2021 / 9:36 pm

    I adore outdoor art!
    Thank you for taking us along to view these lovely installations – it must have been so much fun given the lovely weather you’ve been having. I am so tickled by Arc de Blob!

    So glad to hear that Toronto has moved to Phase 3! Hope you are enjoying some of the amenities available to you now.

    Like

    • Natalie July 23, 2021 / 9:40 pm

      Ju-Lyn, It’s been a very good summer so far and yes, I’ve been having a lot of fun outdoors. The colours of ARc de Blob are so cheerful. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

      • Ju-Lyn July 24, 2021 / 9:13 pm

        One of the reasons I look forward to your posts – you enjoy so many of my favourite things: the outdoors, art, nature …

        Like

        • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 7:32 am

          I’m glad to hear you look forward to my posts 🙂 Have a great week ahead!

          Liked by 1 person

    • Ju-Lyn July 25, 2021 / 9:09 am

      I am looking at your post again and The Epitonium has caught my attention this time – the spiralling design, the spaces. the concept behind it is so enticing. These art stations are such a wonderful presentation.

      Like

      • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 11:33 am

        I like the Epitonium leaning shell design and natural colour. Its interior is actually spacious enough for 4 people to stand in. I saw four girls entered it to take photos from inside.

        Like

        • Ju-Lyn July 30, 2021 / 9:30 pm

          What fun! I love interactive installations like this! It’s not so easy to discern scale through photographs …. I am imagining 4 people inside!

          Like

          • Natalie July 30, 2021 / 10:38 pm

            Many public art installations in Toronto are interactive.

            Like

  15. midlifestylist July 24, 2021 / 2:12 am

    Hi Natalie, my favourite is Plant it Forward – a play on the words pay it forward, and with a sustainability message. I’m so happy for you that restrictions are finally lifting. Unfortunately we’re seeing the opposite in Australia and it feels like we’ve gone back to square one. I blame the slow vaccine rollout and the complacency of people here towards the virus. I really hope we can control this latest outbreak without losing too many lives. Have a lovely weekend, regards Christina

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 9:24 am

      Hi Christina, I like Plant It Forward too. Its design and concept are good for our planet. Vaccinations have helped us get out of our long lockdown. We still have work to do to stop the spread of covid-19 and its variants. Stay safe and well during your lockdown.

      Like

  16. Moumita De Sarkar July 24, 2021 / 4:37 am

    I am amazed at how rich Toronto is in terms of sculptures, architectural designs, and greenery. Would love to visit this place some day 🙂

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 9:31 am

      Moumita, Toronto is a treasure trove for the things you mentioned. I hope you get to visit Toronto with plenty of time to explore the city.

      Like

  17. Teresa July 24, 2021 / 4:43 am

    Wow, I am happy for you that you are opening up and also happy to see these wonderful and colourful public art.

    I have seen some colourful streets and streetart too when Norm was hosting the weekly doors challenge and I was thinking that I would love to go there one day. Thanks for sharing these.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 9:33 am

      Teresa, There’s a lot of beautiful public art in Toronto. I hope you get to visit Toronto with plenty of time to explore the city.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Teresa July 24, 2021 / 9:36 am

        I hope I can one day…because I get so excited when I see them murals ❤️👍🏼

        Like

        • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 9:55 am

          If you like murals, you’re in for a treat in Toronto. Feel free to contact me when you visit 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

          • Teresa July 24, 2021 / 7:42 pm

            Will do! But seems to be going a long time still as we are still having problems containing the spread of covid here so borders are shut!

            Like

  18. trentpmcd July 24, 2021 / 8:17 am

    Very cool installations/stations. Public art is always great, and public art with a purpose even better.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 1:27 pm

      I’m glad you liked these art installations. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  19. RuthScribbles July 24, 2021 / 10:44 am

    I really should visit the closest city and picture the art there! You’ve inspired me. Thanks fir the photo tour!

    Like

  20. Retirement Reflections July 24, 2021 / 11:03 am

    Hi, Natalie – I join you in the joy of emerging from lockdown. The art stations are stunning and their messages timely. Thank you for sharing them with us.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 1:30 pm

      Hi Donna, The re-opening has been great. I hope you’re having a fabulous summer. Thank you for stopping by.

      Like

  21. Beaton July 24, 2021 / 12:20 pm

    The Epitonium looks so precarious… love it
    ~B

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 1:31 pm

      B, The Epitonium is a beautiful design and idea. I’m glad you like it.

      Like

  22. Marsha July 24, 2021 / 1:31 pm

    What a fun post, Natalie and it’s full of public art. I love how you labeled each side. Epitonium and Throbber are my favorites.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 1:35 pm

      Thank you, Marsha, for your kind comment. I like the Epitonium shell design and Throbber bright colours.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha July 24, 2021 / 9:51 pm

        Exactly, that’s what I like too. I hope you are not going to run out of public art. You live in a beautiful place.

        Like

        • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 7:38 am

          It seems impossible for me to run out of public art. Toronto has many amazing outdoor arts that I’ve seen and haven’t got time to post, and new ones are added every year.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Marsha July 25, 2021 / 12:07 pm

            I am always amazed at how much you share and how much beauty there is. You do a great job of displaying it. You should be on the Toronto Chamber of Commerce or Tourism Council. 🙂 I used to be part of our local Chamber of Commerce and also the Sequoia Tourism Council. It’s a great niche. I’m sure they would love to use some of your photos at the very least.

            Like

            • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 12:55 pm

              Thank you, Marsha. Your comment made me happy 🙂 I pay attention to what and how I display images on my blog, not to any standard but my own. I’m passionate about Toronto. Before the covid pandemic, I thought of organizing my own free walks and cycling tours of Toronto, to share the beauty of my home city to visitors and not to make money. I may turn some of my photos of Toronto into “coffee table books” one day and give them away as gifts.

              Liked by 1 person

              • Marsha July 25, 2021 / 5:11 pm

                That’s a great idea. I like to give away puzzles, too. Here you can have puzzles made of your photos for about $15.

                Like

                • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 5:57 pm

                  Puzzles are great, practical and fun gifts. Thanks, Marsha, for the idea.

                  Like

  23. Astrid July 24, 2021 / 3:22 pm

    The concept of Plant It Forward sounds intriguing. Thank you for sharing.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 4:55 pm

      Thank you, Astrid, for your comment. I greatly appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Sanch @ Sanch Writes July 24, 2021 / 6:11 pm

    This all looks so amazing! I love most of them for different reasons. The Plant it Forward concept is wonderful and much-needed. I’m so glad to hear your restrictions have eased further! Hope you have a lovely week and weekend ahead!

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 7:15 pm

      Thank you, Sanch, for sharing your thoughts on these art stations. It must have been quite a job for the jury to select them from 400+ entries. Have a great weekend!

      Like

  25. Deborah Drucker July 24, 2021 / 6:59 pm

    Interesting exhibits. I like the Arc de Blob and the Epitonium is really unique.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 7:17 pm

      Thank you, Deborah, for sharing your thoughts on these art stations. I like ARc de Blob cheerful colours and the Epitonium shell design.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Lizl Bennefeld July 24, 2021 / 7:37 pm

    That was interesting. Thank you! I found myself most attracted to the wheelbarrow artwork. Lovely concept.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 8:00 pm

      Thank you, Lizl, for sharing your thoughts on the art stations. Plant It Forward concept sounds good for our planet.

      Liked by 1 person

  27. csuhpat1 July 24, 2021 / 8:28 pm

    Holy Cow, I love the art stations. So very cool. I could spend a lot of time looking at them. We have been pretty much open for a month here but I am thinking that we might get more restrictions as cases are on a uptick here.

    Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful week.

    Like

    • Natalie July 24, 2021 / 8:42 pm

      I’m glad you like these art stations. It’s a concern when covid-19 cases go up. I hope your city won’t have any major setback. Have a great weekend!

      Like

  28. Tessa July 24, 2021 / 10:36 pm

    I like the Epitonium. I love the odd shape and I think the white color helps because if it were red or dark blue or black or somthing like that I wouldn’t like it at all. The really bright color one kind of turned me off. Too bright!

    Like

    • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 7:39 am

      I like the natural colour and shell design of the Epitonium. Thank you, Tessa, for sharing your thoughts on these art stations.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Tessa July 26, 2021 / 4:03 pm

        Yes I liked the shell shape.

        Like

  29. Jo July 25, 2021 / 12:22 am

    Plant it forward is my fave of these. I love outdoor art.

    Like

    • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 7:41 am

      I like Plant It Forward, too. You may have to plan a long stay in Toronto just to see our outdoor art.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jo July 25, 2021 / 4:50 pm

        I reckon so!

        Like

  30. Terri Webster Schrandt July 25, 2021 / 11:34 am

    I love the Plantit Forward display, Natalie. And I am so happy to read Ontario is in a new phase for reopening! My step-daughter is getting married in Sedona, Arizona late next month and her future in-laws live in Quebec, so this is good news for them to be able to travel to the US for the wedding. I always enjoy your informative posts and photography. Great work on linking with the geometric theme for Sunday Stills. Have a wonderful week and enjoy those fountains!

    Like

    • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 1:06 pm

      Terri, I like the Plant It Forward earth-friendly concept and design. It’s perfect timing that I saw these art stations and they fit your geometric theme.

      The re-opening is definitely good news for your stepdaughter’s future in-laws. I’m happy to hear good news and see flowing water fountains 🙂 Thank you for hosting Sunday Stills. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Kirstin July 25, 2021 / 1:45 pm

    Okay, I seriously need to visit Toronto. So cool. I’ll join up again next week.

    Like

    • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 2:05 pm

      Yes, put Toronto on your travel list. Thank you, Kirstin, for stopping by. Have a great weekend!

      Like

    • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 4:52 pm

      Thank you, Neil, for your comment. I greatly appreciate it. I like Throbber bold colours and how people can interact with it by standing in each of the “booths”.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. Min Write of the Middle July 25, 2021 / 7:00 pm

    Hi Natalie, It never ceases to amaze me all the beautiful art, architecture and landscapes you have over there. I love the colours and joy in Arc de Blob but I also love the structural likeness of a sea shell of The Epitonium – it’s very pleasing on the eye. Love them all really! Hope you have a wonderful week!

    Like

    • Natalie July 25, 2021 / 7:15 pm

      Hi Min, I’m glad you like these art stations. Toronto has a lot of beautiful arts and interesting places to explore. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Have a great week!

      Like

  33. Diana July 25, 2021 / 10:25 pm

    It’s wonderful things are opening up more that is exciting! Wonderful art stations you shared. Such beautiful photos!! Thank you for the coffee this weekend!! ❤️

    Like

    • Natalie July 26, 2021 / 10:13 am

      Hi Diana, I’m glad you liked these art stations and my photos. I had fun visiting and photographing them. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week!

      Liked by 1 person

  34. Julie July 26, 2021 / 12:57 am

    Throbber and Arc de Blob looks so much fun!

    Like

    • Natalie July 26, 2021 / 10:13 am

      They both have vibrant colours.

      Like

  35. Kelleyn Rothaermel July 26, 2021 / 8:32 am

    Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog. Not sure why you had trouble opening my profile. I clicked on the link and it opened right up. Anyway, the art installation look fantastic. I am glad you were able to get out and enjoy.

    Like

    • Natalie July 26, 2021 / 10:18 am

      Thank you, Kelleyn, for your visit and comment. I went to your blog from the Weekend Coffee Share link-up and wasn’t able to open your profile. Maybe it’s not accessible via InlInkz. I’ll try again directly from your blog. I hope you enjoy the coffee shares and consider joining us again.

      Like

  36. Photos by Jez July 26, 2021 / 2:15 pm

    Fantastic post, Natalie 👏 Thanks for sharing such unique pieces; my favourite was the Epitonium, the whole structure was very calming 😃

    Like

    • Natalie July 26, 2021 / 2:27 pm

      Thank you, Jez, for sharing your thoughts. The Epitonium is beautiful with its leaning shell design and natural colour.

      Liked by 1 person

  37. Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid July 26, 2021 / 8:41 pm

    I love that you can get out and about and it’s so wonderful to see Toronto come back to life through your blog posts. Toronto is such an artistic city and I enjoyed your virtual sculpture tour. I think my favourite would be Arc de Blob, it’s just so vibrant and colourful!

    Like

    • Natalie July 26, 2021 / 8:49 pm

      Thank you, Sammie, for your comment. ARc de Blob colours are cheerful. I heard about the lockdown in Sydney. Thinking of you and wishing you well.

      Like

  38. Debbie July 26, 2021 / 9:27 pm

    These are certainly eye catching Natalie, so interesting and I love visiting these places via your posts. Many thanks. #lifethisweek

    Like

    • Natalie July 26, 2021 / 9:37 pm

      Debbie, I’m glad you found these art stations interesting. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week!

      Liked by 1 person

  39. Erica/Erika August 4, 2021 / 8:58 pm

    The restrictions and lockdown really emphasize how the concept of joy can change. I greatly enjoy seeing the art and the architecture. Interesting about perspective such as the East and North view of the Epitonium. Thank you for sharing a fascinating post, Natalie ❤️

    Like

    • Natalie August 4, 2021 / 9:39 pm

      I’m glad you liked my post, Erica/ Erika. It was great fun to see and photograph these art installations at different angles. Thank you for stopping by. Have a wonderful week!

      Liked by 1 person

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