Next time you’re in downtown Toronto, make sure to have your eyes peeled for a massive new public art installation that’s poised to change the face of the Financial District.
This week, Oxford Properties Group — a leading global commercial real estate investor, developer, and manager — unveiled Dreaming, a $2 million public art installation weighing more than 2.5 tonnes and reaching over three-storeys high.
Created by Spanish artist, Jaume Plensa, who is known for his large-scale public art installations in major cities around the world, Dreaming will alter the area’s streetscape and anchor a reimagined public plaza called The Terrace at Oxford’s Richmond-Adelaide Centre.
“Dreaming is a cast stone portrait created of white marble and resin, installed on top of a base that will serve as a public bench to encourage the public to enjoy the reimagined outdoor public space,” reads a release on the installation.
The sculpture is of a young girl with her eyes closed in “quiet contemplation” and was created “with the intention of passersby looking inward.”
“Plensa’s vision is for the art to act as a metaphor for humanity’s dreams for the future and for a shared human experience; a concept needed now more than ever before.”
“We are invested in Toronto’s urban landscape and in creating a magnetic destination that inspires people,” said Eric Plesman, Oxford Properties’ Executive Vice President for North America.
“The Dreaming installation is a landmark sculpture that will attract visitors from the immediate community and broader audiences to a public plaza that will support the vitality of downtown Toronto and our ongoing evolution as a world-class city.
“This is a crucial time to bring inspiring outdoor spaces that encourage connection between urban development, art and the community. After months of staying at home, Dreaming will be there to welcome back workers, residents and visitors as we start to bring back vitality to the downtown core. She gives a message of hope, courage and quiet contemplation at a time of great upheaval in all of our lives.”
Dreaming marks the culmination of the $650 million, multi-year and multi-building revitalization initiative by Oxford Properties at Richmond-Adelaide Centre.
The revitalization comprises the recently completed restoration and redevelopment of the heritage-listed 85 Richmond Street, the recladding of 120 and 130 Adelaide Street, the restoration of 111 Richmond Street, and the addition of the 100 Adelaide Street tower to the Toronto skyline in 2017.
In addition to Dreaming, other notable public art pieces located in the immediate buildings include a preserved mosaic by Group of Seven member J.E.H MacDonald found in the entranceway to 100 Adelaide Street.
Plensa has received numerous national and international awards and has created large-scale public art installations that can be found in global cities such as New York, London, Singapore, and Tokyo. Dreaming is the only sculpture by Plensa in public view in Toronto.