Vancouver artist and writer Douglas Coupland is set to unveil The National Portrait, the result of a high-tech cross-country project, at the Ottawa Art Gallery tomorrow (June 29), in time for Canada Day.
The installation is a sort of three-dimensional garden of 1,000 crowd-sourced 21st-century Canadian faces, all sitting atop risers and positioned to look towards both the sun and the future.
The National Portrait was created partnership with Canadian fashion retailer Simons. The figures were largely gathered from about 1,700 of 3-D-printed portraits scanned from volunteers who visited Simons stores. The cross-country project ran from July 2015 until April 2017, with stops in nine cities, including Vancouver. Each participant received a hand-sized version of his or her own 3-D-printed bust.
The work is created from approximately 70 kilometres of biodegradable plastic filament. Coupland's concerns with the global plastic-pollution crisis has also played out recently in the installation called Vortex at the Vancouver Aquarium, where it's on view to spring 2019.
If you're in the nation's capital this summer, the installation at the municipal gallery is on view till August 19.