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Five new art installations adorn Toronto's waterfront

For a second consecutive year, the Waterfront Business Improvement Area and Winter Stations present Ice Breakers – five interactive art installations set up along Queens Quay West between Spadina Avenue and York Street. With more than 100 international submissions, the five winning works are by artists from Canada, Portugal and China. Photos by Fred Lum

Laura Bunston, left, and her sister Marcia explore the art installation called Ensemble by Joo Arajo Sousa and Joana Correia Silva of JJs Arquitectura (Porto, Portugal). Ensemble merges architecture, music and astronomy to explore the dialogue between humans and the urban environment. The installation is inspired by wind chimes, which visitors can touch to create abstract compositions and ever-changing soundscapes.

A woman walks dogs past Through the Eyes of the Bear by Tanya Goertzen of People Places (Calgary). Inspired by Ursa Major or the Great Bear constellation, this installation uses renewable, recyclable and compostable materials to ask visitors to consider how humans interact with nature. There’s an opening behind the bear’s head that allows visitors to enter and peer through the eyes to see the city.

Winter FanFare by Thena Tak (Vancouver) is a series of rotating fan-sculptures. In the spirit of the competition’s theme, ‘constellations,’ Winter FanFare deploys individual fan-sculptures to create clusters of pockets where the public can meander through or run in and around.

Black Bamboo by Bennet Marburger and Ji Zhang of 2408 Studio (Hangzhou Shi, China) is an installation made from 90 painted bamboo poles freely arranged to form a framework in an abstract cubic shape. The installation is accessible and invites visitors to walk or climb through it.

Root Cabin by Liz Wreford and Peter Sampson of Public City Architecture (Winnipeg) uses coloured cuts of wood that can be seen through gaps in a pile of weathered roots. When further explored by a visitor, the colours reveal a void that can be inhabited, and an iconic, nostalgic form of Canadian dwelling emerges.

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