On Fish Ladders and Escalators

Fish Ladder: Salmon in the Capilano

Arabella Campbell Photo Mural

The City of Vancouver Public Art Program in collaboration with the Canada Line Public Art Program is pleased to present a new photographic installation by artist Jim Breukelman at the Vancouver City Centre Station March through September 2013.

Fish Ladder - Salmon in the Capilano - image 2


Artwork Description:

The installation consists of five large images in a grey field on the window of the station. These images emphasize the mystery and movement of the salmon within the turbulent flow of water. Salmon are central to the economy and culture of this region. The fish are depicted in the controlled environment of a fish ladder, or in this case, the frame of the photograph. Seen through all these man-made lenses, they are still captivating as an icon of coastal wildlife.

“What I find uplifting about these images is that, even though these creatures are being controlled, funnelled through a man-made environment, they retain their aura of wildness,” Breukelman says. “In spite of the knowledge base we have amassed about salmon, there are still important aspects of their life that remain unknown. For me, that is the beauty of wildness and wilderness….its potential for surprise and conjecture.

“On another level, I like the whimsical idea of this piece being placed on the Canada Line entrance because the site houses a set of escalators, whose purpose is not unlike that of a fish ladder.”

Fish Ladder - Salmon in the Capilano - image 1

Who is the  artist?                                                                                                                      

Jim Breukelman produces large format photographic essays on subjects as diverse as domestic bungalows, a paint ball park, and the utopian Biosphere 2 project in Arizona. Often they depict the material traces of human activities. Breukelman is the former Head of the Department of Photography and Dean of Media Arts at the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design. His work has been shown extensively and was recently profiled in Builders, the 2012 Canadian Biennial at the National Gallery of Canada. He was honoured with a Mayor’s Arts Award in Visual Art from the City of Vancouver in 2012. His work is included in a series of postage stamps from Canada Post honouring Canadian photographers, released March 22, 2013. He is represented by the Republic Gallery in Vancouver.

The City of Vancouver Public Art Program plans and commissions contemporary art for public spaces in the city.

The City Centre station mural is a partnership with InTransit BC’s Canada Line Public Art Program. The Public Art Program commissions a two-dimensional work twice a year for the station.  Artists are invited from a list of artists recommended by a selection panel.

For more information contact: Karen.Henry@vancouver.ca

One thought on “On Fish Ladders and Escalators

  1. Pingback: Salmon spotted swimming on the Canada Line — Vancouver Is Awesome

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