Toronto Through My Lens

Month: November 2022 (Page 1 of 4)

Jimmy’s Coffee

As many know, Jimmy’s Coffee is a Toronto coffee shop. There are currently 9 locations in the city, most situated in hip and young neighbourhoods. While neither young nor hip, I’ve been to a few of the locations and found they have a unique interior decor and feel. The Jimmy’s at 84 Gerrard Street West, though, has the other locations beat – it has Jimmy Mount Rushmore!

In the fashion of the real Mount Rushmore, here we have Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Jimmy Buffett and Jim Morrison:

The mural was commissioned by Jimmy’s Coffee and completed in the summer of 2014. It measures 26 by 12 feet (approximately 312 sq. ft.). The brilliant artist who created this mural is Christiano De Araujo. Christiano is a self-taught artist born in Anápolis, Goiás, Brazil, but now living in Toronto. He is the founder of Toronto Artists Studio, a studio of visual artists, painters, digital artists and sculptors who design and produce murals and visual communication projects for audiences on a small and grand scale.

“U.V. Ceti”

U.V. Ceti is an abstract sculpture by Andrew Posa, a Hungarian-Canadian sculptor. The piece was established at 30 Wellington Street East in 1992.

This large bronze sculpture sits on a base in the centre of a fountain. The sculpture looks like an asymmetrical V, with its arms spreading out to the sides and upward. Resting at the joint, in the centre of the V, is a large round ball. The V form looks like it is a cross-section of something larger. The front and back surfaces are smooth and slightly concave while the top and bottom of the V are rough with the look of earth. The sphere in the centre of the V looks as if it is a planet or asteroid that has crashed and formed a crater in the V.

U. V. Ceti by Andrew Posa
Dedicated to Edward Isaac Richmond
Architect 1908 – 1982
A kind man who shared his love of beauty

dedication plaque, attached to the base

Just in case you were wondering what a U. V. Ceti is:

Our galaxy is filled with billions of red dwarf stars, all of which are too dim to see with the naked eye. Lying at the faint, red end of the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, their small masses — a few tenths that of the Sun — make them much cooler and dimmer than our own Sun. In fact, few of these stars have been detected beyond a dozen or so parsecs of our solar system. However, some of these stars belong to the spectacular class of variables known as the flare stars or the UV Ceti variables. At irregular and unpredictable intervals, they can dramatically increase in brightness over a broad wavelength range from X-rays to radio waves for anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. The fact that such small, unassuming stars can suddenly undergo incredibly energetic events make the flare stars one of the more intriguing targets for variable star observers.1

1 UV Ceti and the Flare Stars

R.C. Harris Water Treatment Plant

For today’s post, let’s take a little trip to the east end of the city.

The R.C. Harris Water Treatment Plant is an absolute masterpiece of Art Deco, located on the shore of Lake Ontario at 2701 Queen Street East in Toronto. The plant was designed in 1929 and built from 1932 to 1937. It opened in 1941 and was later expanded from 1955 to 1958. The plant is named after Roland Caldwell Harris, who was the Commissioner of Works from 1912 until his death in 1945.

The R.C. Harris Filtration Plant
2701 Queen Street East, Toronto

The structure looks like a museum, but is actually a water treatment plant. Surprisingly, the inside of the building is similarly elegant, with cavernous halls and marble passages, all full of filtration equipment. This opulence has earned the building the nickname “Palace of Purification.”

There are three buildings comprising the plant: the Filter Building, the Service Building and the Pumping Station. Together they represent the largest example of Art Deco in the entire city. The use of marble, bronze and carved limestone is prevalent throughout and typical of the Art Deco architectural style.

The Filter Building

Filter Operating Galleries, Filter Building
South Entrance Lobby, Filter Building
South Entrance Lobby, Filter Building
Entrance Hall, Filter Building
Signal Pylon in Rotunda, Filter Building
The signal pylon indicates time and filter backwash conditions
Signal Pylon in Rotunda, Filter Building
The signal pylon indicates time and filter backwash conditions
Filter Operating Galleries, Filter Building
Each gallery is over 110m long and provides access to 20 filters
Controls in Filter Operating Galleries, Filter Building
Fountain Outside Filter Building
Filter Building

The Service Building

The Pumping Station

Pumping Station
High-Lift Room, Pumping Station
High-Lift Room, Pumping Station
This signal panel indicates which pumps are operating
Pumping Station & Filter Building

The water treatment plant is the largest one in Toronto. It produces 30% of Toronto’s drinking water and can potentially produce 950 million litres daily.

The R. C. Harris Water Treatment Plant has been used in dozens of films and television series as a prison, clinic or headquarters.

Lake Ontario Beside The Plant
The R.C. Harris Water Treatment Plant 2701 Queen Street East, Toronto

A beautiful place to enjoy.

“Remembered Sustenance”

These unusual looking creatures outside Metro Hall on Wellington Street West were created by Toronto artist Cynthia Short. Completed in 1992, Remembered Sustenance contains 19 bronze sculptures in total.

The inspiration for Remembered Sustenance is drawn from the location of the sculpture’s site. Adjacent to the outdoor Metro Hall daycare playground, the work has been created to convey the sense of playfulness and whimsy associated with children’s stories and games. This group of bronze, non-specific cartoonish animals appear to be migrating across the lawn, towards, then away from a curtain drawn by two birds (at left in shot below). Below the curtain, a plate set in the ground holds a negative impression of the shape of a small ballerina that might be found in a child’s music box (this might have been visible in the shots if there hadn’t been so much junk on the ground that day!).

The various elements found in the artwork represent the remembered experiences of childhood that the artist suggests can sustain us throughout our lives. Open and abundant with possibility of meaning, it is the artist’s stated intention that the work should most of all be enjoyed by children.

Cynthia Short is an artist working in Toronto. For the past several years she has been working on small sculptures using materials such as wax, soil, and paper mache. She remarks: I try to make things that have a quality of something remembered or recognized. I hope that my images grow from a place that we all have inside.

Puente de Luz Bridge

Located at 524 Front Street West over the busiest railway corridor in Canada, the Puente de Luz is a sculptural pedestrian bridge and the largest public art installation in Canada. The name Puente de Luz, or Bridge of Light, was chosen to signify the link between North and South and the connection between the two countries that came together to build it – Canada and Chile.

The Puente de Luz was designed by Chilean sculptor Francisco Gazitua with structural engineer Peter Sheffield. Located in the Concord CityPlace neighbourhood, the bridge carries pedestrians and cyclists from the western portion of CityPlace to Front Street West just between Spadina and Bathurst.

The $8 Million bridge was completed in 2011. It was built as required by the City of Toronto for developer Concord Adex to create inter-connectivity with surrounding neighbourhoods.

Entrance on Front Street West
Bridge exit on to Iceboat Terrace
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