Location: Outer Place – 88 Main, Ottawa – PLEASE NOTE THAT THE ADDRESS IN THE PRINTED PROGRAM IS INCORRECT.
Description: In a former school playground, a night garden installation where sunflowers and vines have grown rampant. Light projections illuminate and exaggerate the plant forms and surrounding architecture.
Ottawa’s Main Street has become an extended construction zone. Our project, Asphalt Oasis, is in the thick of the tumult, weaving nature, urbanity and culture into an indelible night installation where plant forms and projections combine horizontally, vertically and diagonally throughout De Mazenod School’s derelict concrete playground. The exaggerations and distortions of shadow and light interplay with the complex growth of sunflowers as well as hops and scarlet runner bean vines growing on strings across the outside space.
The installation is the culmination of a summer-long beautification project, showing the transformation of the fenced-in site into a spectacularly lit, blooming night-time garden on pavement. The audience will experience it like an abundant stage set, viewed from the safety of Graham Avenue’s sidewalks.
Planting started June 15, 2015. Our aim has been to create a verdant, multi-sensory experience out of an uncared for and forgotten public space. Set in Old Ottawa East, it is a celebration of the neighbourhood, its residents and the wandering audience of Nuit Blanche.
Bio: Margo and Hegel are both artists that continually engage in temporary disruption of urban space with organic materials. Their site-specific approaches – as collaborators and in their individual art practices – communicate and interact within broad and diversified audiences about issues directly relevant to the spectators’ lives. Their ephemeral transformations of familiar places allow for space to gain new meaning, sometimes jolting viewers into a fresh awareness, altering the perception with a lasting impression. “Asphalt Oasis”‘s evolution, culminating in the crescendo of Nuit Blanche, has the added element of collective and shared experiences of a once-in-a-lifetime event.
With thanks to the Ottawa Catholic School Board.