Why I Love Toronto
When you first read this statement sitting on the side of a building around Dovercourt and Queen, you automatically think that it is an inspirational message for the patients at CAMH, since it over looks their property. If you guessed that then you are partially right for this mural contains an even deeper message to the artist [Torontonian Jesse Harris] and an even deeper meaning for me.
The mural is no doubt meant to be an inspirational message, but Harris also notes that it is a commentary on the ever-changing neighborhood. Now what I love is the positioning of this commentary for it is on the side of old building that has clearly sat on that property for a very long time as well as sits above the walls surrounding CAMH that were built by the patients of the Provincial Lunatic Asylum. However, I think the message can extend far beyond the neighbourhood it is in and apply to Toronto as a whole.
Toronto is changing. Census data shows changes in the languages that are spoken in Toronto and the composition of the family. The skyline is changing and buildings that once held the title of being the tallest in Canada, if not North America, such as Commerce Court, the Fairmont Royal York and One King West, are now being dwarfed by condominiums that could potentially reach 70 stories in the next few years. Condominiums are another thing. No longer is Toronto populated with horizontal residences, but now everyone is living vertical. Buildings are being lost because we ignore their historical and cultural significance and mainstream/ commercialized/ American retailers are popping up taking over small local businesses.
I was going to launch this post sometime next week, but then I heard of three major Toronto landmarks that would be closing within the next year. Along with the Toronto Women’s Bookstore that will be closing at the end of the month, we also have to say goodbye to the Mr. Christie Factory, the Masonic Temple and the Model Railroad Club of Toronto. This week I am dedicating posts to all three landmarks and will have exclusive coverage of the Women’s Bookstore at the end of the month.
We have changed as a city. Many argue for the better and others argue for the worst. I think it could go either way for me. I think change is necessary for us to evolve as the population grows. If we don’t accommodate for these changes then we will be in trouble. Yet the people who are making these changes happen are not taking any consideration for the past - our history. We all need to evolve, but we need to keep our past. If European countries can do it, then why can’t we?
I have read too deeply into this mural, but that’s the person I am. However, I think this mural will really allow Torontonians (those who have been born and raised) to really thing and grasp the amount of change that has occurred.
That is Why I Love Toronto