It’s already springtime at Chester Subway! The station is part of the Toronto Transit Commission. The new public artworks there caught the eye of Nowtoronto, the City’s best source for alternative news, and entertainment. The media outlet featured my creations on Instagram last month. I completed the two new eight by 14-foot ceramic mosaics in 2020.
The public artworks, entitled Florae, show native plants from the neighbourhoods around the station. The featured flowers are milkweed, verbena, trout lily, and blue flag iris. The images combine realism with abstraction. Sometimes the plants look like photographs whereas, in the other areas, they break down into playful blocks of pure colour. In this way, I am pushing the mosaic medium in a new direction. MOSAIKA of Montreal fabricated the hand-glazed ceramic tiles.
The images collide together in double-exposed overlays. This ground-breaking use of tiles gives these stationary wall works a sense of movement. For example, the milkweed seeds appear to be blowing into the sky.
We faced numerous delays due to the Covid19 lockdown last year. MOSAIKA studios were mandated to close for three months. When they reopened in June 2020, their staff worked in shifts at half capacity. Given these challenges, they managed to complete the mosaics in record time. Everyone stayed safe. Their installation team followed TTC safety guidelines on site. Videographer Rick Thompson filmed the installation process which went at lightning speed.