Douglas Coupland distills Calgary’s essence with new installation
Douglas Coupland has created a new work that explores the identity of Alberta’s largest city by condensing an assortment of its distinctive elements into a uniform, colour-coded index. Titled Interpretation of Calgary, Alberta in the 21st Century, the wall-mounted installation is an array of 30 multi-ringed targets, each representing an aspect of the local culture or the natural environment such as curling, wild roses, or the whooping crane.
“It’s a distillation of Calgary that is both part of the modern world, yet also eternal,” the Vancouver artist said in a news release. “It is a work that engages the viewer in an ongoing challenge to identify and remember what is depicted—almost like a chocolate box and its map. The forms become signs that will, across time, mellow and ripen within a viewer's memory, also acting as a smart and anticipated 'welcome home' moment.”
Developer Qualex-Landmark commissioned the artwork, which is roughly five metres by four metres in size. It is to be installed in the lobby of an under-construction high-rise condo development in downtown Calgary. Coupland’s other major installations include Digital Orca at the Vancouver Convention Centre, Terry Fox Memorial at B.C. Place, and Monument to the War of 1812 in Toronto.