2017 Commission



Artist: Olivier Bonnard
Installation: September 10-17th, 2017
Site: The Bentway 


In this work, the imagery while grand and nodding to the majesty of the Lake of shining water, points to the vulnerability of underwater life within Lake Ontario. In this sketch we can see that the native fish species, Red Side Dace (an endangered species) are sparse, tiny and defenceless in comparison to the Hydrilla that is strong and thriving (invasive aquatic plant). The scale brings to the forefront a concern of a growing unbalance within the ecosystem in Lake Ontario.

  Conceptual sketch in-situ

Conceptual sketch in-situ

At the bottom we can see the eggs of the native fish glowing, showing that there is hope and that solutions exist to reverse the patterns that are threatening the future of this essential water resource.

The blue tones are softened along the top of the structure with the whitish grey of the raw sewage overflow that plagues Toronto's waterfront with each rainfall. Together, they, flow all around the angles of the bent, enhancing a sense of wonder and curiosity. The layering and textures illustrate the cycle and the immense power of the water, its scale and sprawling complexity; like the journey of the Garrison Creek who lies underneath the Bentway site.

Artist Olivier Bonnard, A Love Letter to the Great Lakes
Commissioned by Relay2017 and Friends of the Pan Am Path
Produced by Jacquelyn West, Natasa Kajganic, Love Letter Projects
Hosted by The Bentway Conservancy