Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

2022/04 Moments April 2022

Toronto, Ontario; Orillia, Ontario; San Francisco, California; Sunnyvale, California; Redwood City, California; Oakland, California; Albany, California; Emeryville, California; San Rafael, California

St. Matthews Clubhouse
St. Matthews Clubhouse: Exhibition opening of Doorstop Diaries @EastEndArtsTO, terminus for travelling journals progressing through the neighbourhood along an art-at-home program July through February. Diana Yee (2021-2022) collage works officially untitled, but the text reads: “My hands aren’t really that big or bumpy, I just had problems tracing them”, and “Things I enjoy”. This event is the first opportunity to meet other art contributors beyond an online web conference. (St. Matthews Clubhouse, Riverdale Park East, Broadview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario) 20220401
Ignite Gallery
Ignite Gallery: Water-worn bricks from #LeslieStreetSpit now @brandonceli (2020-2022) Rock Sculptures, painted with acrylic to resemble digital music players and smartphones obsoleted with time. Part of the #ElectricCircus exhibition @OcaduIgnite gallery, reflecting on imperfections in technology that might present an opportunity to change direction. Biked over late for the OCADU Gallery Crawl, missing the guided tour in favourite of a quieter visit. (Ignite Gallery, OCADU, McCaul Street, Toronto, Ontario) 20220402

Ignite Gallery: Illuminated ceiling, reflecting from #KatieKotler (2019–2022) Permanent Fixtures – Bath Tomb. Immersive exhibit behind a darkening curtain, part of the #ElectricCircus show @OcaduIgnite gallery. A little sleuthing to find a projector above, and a mirror below. (Ignite Gallery, OCADU, McCaul Street, Toronto, Ontario) 20220402

Leslie Grove Gallery
Leslie Grove Gallery: Striking colours Sadie Compton @sadies_art (2022) A Citrus Friend, in acrylic and pesca markers. Fine Art Studio @CentennialEDU group show @TechnicolourFAS @LeslieGroveGallery. Creature resembling a lemon embodies the feeling of overstimulation and sensory overload. (Leslie Grove Gallery, Queen Street East, Toronto, Ontario) 20220403
Daniels Spectrum
Daniels Spectrum: One in the series of Ripened Off the Vine paper collages of @DesignTOFest, #DavidWoodward (2020) The Memory of Dirt. Cuts from magazines and old books provide lots of details with plants in monochrome, the earth and hands in muted colours. In the hall by the ticket office and theatres, passersby should pay more attention. (Daniels Spectrum, Dundas Street East, Regent Park, Toronto, Ontario) 20220404
Small Arms Inspection Building
Small Arms Inspection Building: Terracotta tiles and containers #DanaPrieto (2022) Footnotes for an Arsenal reminds @TorontoBiennial visitors of the history of the former munitions plant of the Canadian Army. Could be a playground or a patio, except for the shape of shell casings. No crowds on a weekday morning, plus docents enthusiastic to explain the art. (Small Arms Inspection Building, Lakeshore Boulevard West, Mississauga, Ontario) 20220408
Small Arms Inspection Building
Small Arms Inspection Building: Lighthouse tower #AugustasSerapinas (2022) 5 Sheds transformed by @SawmillSid for @torontobiennial. Reclaimed wood, nails and wallpaper reassembled from an abandoned shed from Barr’d Islands, Fogo Island. Friday morning scheduling presented an opportunity for a date, on short notice. (Small Arms Inspection Building, Lakeshore Boulevard West, Mississauga, Ontario) 20220408
72 Perth Avenue
72 Perth Avenue: Wooden balls almost hidden at base of #AndreaCarlson (2022) Never-Ending Monument of 28 columns @TorontoBiennial . Sculpture related to Man Mound ancient earthework in Wisconsin, that bridges supernatural and natural worlds, and life and death. Progressive visits to contemporary art on Friday morning, sites are across town from home. (72 Perth Avenue, Toronto, Ontario) 20220408
Union Station
Union Station: West wing #ArtworxTO @culture_to foreground #MADEYOULOOK (2022) non-monument programme Stories Edition, background #ShellieZhang (2020-2021) Facades. Brown pedestal is a cardboard shell reimagining memorials from colonial architecture. Double-sided illuminated electric sign boxes inspired by Saskatoon’s Chinatown lack words or information, functioning more like tombstones. Observed passengers on the way to or from trains pausing to circle the installations, noticing their presence. (Union Station, Front Street West, Toronto, Ontario) 20220414
Mississaga Street East
Mississaga Street East: Bright but cool spring afternoon, short day trip north to remove the complexities of online meetings. Still early in season for tourists, storefronts exhibit enthusiasm for their businesses. Outside the bustle of urban centres, there’s more calm. (Mississaga Street East, Orillia, Ontario) 20220420
AC741
AC741: Leaving YYZ, heading to SFO. Father’s docs are better than mine, I had a secondary screening all the way to gate. Started voyage early, stress was low. (Pearson International Airport, Toronto, Ontario) 20220422
SFO International Terminal
SFO International Terminal: We brought a plane down from Toronto to San Francisco, so that NPI and CL could fly home. Tightly coordinated visits to the Bay Area so that we don’t overload all of our California-resident family at the same time. After deplaning, another connection with one automobile headed south on 101 to Sunnyvale, the other going north to Oakland. (SFO International Terminal, San Francisco, California) 20220422
De Anza neighbourhood
De Anza neighbourhood: Dinner with grandfather visiting from Toronto, since newlyweds (of 6 months) have had deferred nuptial festivities due to pandemic. Paths crossing for Muskoka-born generation of family, with their own descendants scattered across the continent. Some in the adjoining room playing with the next generation. (De Anza neighbourhood, Sunnyvale, California) 20220423
De Anza neighbourhood
De Anza neighbourhood: Family photo in Northern California back yard, flowers blooming in spring. Father will visit with more family in Southerh California and enjoy cruise, before returning to Toronto next week. We communicate frequently online, but have a few days when we’re at least all in the same time zone. (De Anza neighbourhood, Sunnyvale, California) 20220424
Tafoni Trail
Tafoni Trail: In amongst the redwoods, @JimSpohrer assesses the probability of the Tafoni Sandstone Monolith rolling downhill as minimal. The honeycomb weathering takes thousands of years as water dissolves calcite and redeposits as crystals, resulting in craters and bulges. Five mile hike outbound on Tafoni Trail, led down to valley stream, concluding with a long incline back on the Fir Trail. (Tafoni Trail, El Corte de Madera Creek Preserve, Redwood City, California) 20220425
Old Oakland
Old Oakland: Temporary digital nomad, with family support. Shelter by son , second screen via portable monitor from son , after his visit to the Bay Area last week. Weekend was full with extended family in California, early week catching up from colleagues who I normally only see online. (Old Oakland, Oakland, California) 20220426
Solano Junction
Solano Junction: Lunch with Ian @MitroffCrisis , discussing next book on dumb arguments. He hosted in his neighbourhood on the edge of Albany and North Berkeley, and walked over. I arrived via the scenic route on AC Transit Bus 18, educational to see civic landscape northbound on MLK Way and southbound on Market Street. (Solano Junction, Solano Avenue, Albany, California) 20220426
Morcom Rose Garden
Morcom Rose Garden: As we playfully stalked the wild turkey in the rose, he fanned out his tail to look more threatening. We hadn’t appreciated that there may be 20 or 30 in the flock, with an aggressive gobbler named Gerald leading to a park shut down in 2020. Garden first opened in the 1930s won’t see full blooms for a few weeks. (Morcom Rose Garden, Jean Street, Oakland, California) 20220426
Old Oakland
Old Oakland: Bright lights in alley off Ninth Street illuminate storefront, while mural @blksiren et al. (2020) #SayTheirNames is in the shadows. Created circa the George Floyd protests, the feathers bear names of individuals killed by the police. An after-dinner stroll on a Wednesday night revealed some nightlife, with more activity expected on Thursday, and into the weekend. (Ninth Street between Broadway and Washington Street, Old Oakland, California) 20220428
Embarcadero West
Embarcadero West: Walking west on Clay Street towards Jack London Square, blocked by a long, slow-moving freight train. Discovered the elevator up to a 4th floor pedestrian overpass, crossing over to the waterfront. The history of Oakland as a transit hub accepts open rail crossings that other urban centres might not. (Embarcadero West, Jack London Square, Oakland, California) 20220428
NIDOs BackYard
NIDOs BackYard: After ordering a beer and a horchata (yellow with tumeric) from the bar, the Tostadas de Atun came as expected, while the Aguachilde de Negro de Pescado con Chiltepin was a surprise – served in a bowl with a spoon, and tortilla chips on the side. We were laughing as the waiter capturing the photo was dodging a fern moving with the slow breeze. Sunny, but not warm enough to be wearing shorts. (NIDOs BackYard, Oak Street, Oakland, California) 20220428
The Drawing Room SF
The Drawing Room SF: Friday, 8:30pm, after dinner in the Mission District, encountered a lively art gallery, with a musician packing up after a performance. Large variety of styles in the Women Rising 2022 exhibition, connecting local artists by making their work accessible. Valencia Street has many blocks closed to traffic for pedestrians, and restaurants spill over the sidewalk onto the street. (The Drawing Room SF, Valencia Street, Mission District, San Francisco, California) 20220429
Rudys Cant Fail Cafe
Rudys Cant Fail Cafe: Brunch Dazed and Confused plate of scrambled eggs with chorizo, pasilla chiles, and house-made hollandaise sauce on hash browns. When my black bean burger arrived, the next table exclaimed “Onion Rings!” they could have had instead of fries. Local diner is well known for its name from a Clash song and part ownership by a member of Green Day. (Rudy’s Can’t Fail Cafe, Hollisville Street, Emeryville, California) 20220430

China Camp Village
China Camp Village: North of San Francisco Bay, on the west side of San Pablo Bay, is the remnants of the last of the shrimping villages dating back to 1855. Chinese immigrants would harvest shrimp, dry in the sun or oven, and then ship up to 3 million pounds of shrimp per year back to China. The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, banning of exports in 1905 and then outlawing of bag nets in 1911 all but discouraged continuing industry, with the last descendant seeing the transfer of property for a state park in 1976. (China Camp Village, San Rafael, Marin County, California) 20220430

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