Footprints of Change

Jo-Lynn Yen, Hannah Hui, Saige Michel, Esteban Poveda Torres

July 15, 2019 - September 10, 2019

Footprints of Change is a critical reflection on the ongoing gentrification happening in Parkdale. With the building demolitions at Dufferin and King coming up, the artists wanted to highlight the negative impact of gentrification at specific sites, as well as uplift the ongoing and lasting communities that continue to sustain anti-gentrification movements in Parkdale.

Using the Parkdale Community Benefits Framework: Guide for Development without Displacement by Parkdale People’s Economy and Art, Design & Gentrification: A Primer by The Public as starting points, the artists created “building imprints” – aerial silhouettes of the buildings – taped onto the pavement adjacent to each recently demolished building. The exhibition will feature photos of these building imprints on site, and acrylic panel pieces that show different representations of the city and its buildings.

As students in Reza Nik’s experimental architecture course, the artists re-imagine and re-definine how architecture can engage in challenging gentrification. Footprints of Change ultimately wants to remind us of the possibilities for supporting and sustaining thriving communities beyond the harmful processes of gentrification.

Artist Bios:

Jo-Lynn Yen

Jo-Lynn is entering her final semester at the University of Toronto, pursuing an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Studies, with a specialist in Architectural Technology. Growing up in Edmonton, Jo-Lynn witnessed the rapid construction and demolition of buildings. Since observing the continuous change of Toronto’s urban fabric, she has begun to understand the consequences of our actions in a macro-scale. Her personal interests include photography, travel, digital art, and programming.

Hannah Hui

Hannah recently completed a specialist in Theory and History of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urbanism, with a minor in Visual Studies at the University of Toronto. She is trained in Chinese dance + painting techniques and is an accomplished pianist. Hannah also enjoys travelling, not only to relax, but to experience different cultures, food, and architecture.

Saige Michel

Saige is a fourth-year honours student from the University of Toronto completing a Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Studies with a specialization in Architectural Design. She grew up in Banff National Park and attributes living in a small town to her strong awareness of the importance of community. During her spare time Saige enjoys drawing, painting, and rock climbing. She also likes trees a lot, valuing the relationship between the built and natural environments.

Esteban Poveda Torres

Esteban is a fourth-year student in the Daniels School of Architecture within the University of Toronto. Esteban is in the Technology Specialist stream and hopes to use the knowledge acquired from his education to pursue a career in the field of sustainable architecture. From a young age, he’s understood that buildings play a significant role in the health of humans but also that of the planet.

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