Public art installations are among the ways that new developments contribute to the pedestrian realm the surrounds them, and while many of these installations passively engage passersby, one new piece of art takes interaction to the next level, actively engaging with those who encounter it. The new installation, known as Back to Front, is designed by the London UK-based Jason Bruges Studio, and is located along a walkway that cuts diagonally through a park—in fact a Privately Owned Public Space (PoPS)—outside of Tridel’s new 300 Front Street West, a 49-storey condominium tower at Front and John in Toronto's Entertainment District.

300 Front Street West, Tridel, Back to Front, Jason Bruges Studio'Back to Front' by Jason Bruges Studio, image courtesy of Tridel

A series of six black monoliths divided into two groups of three, Back to Front on first glance appears to be little more than granite blocks—with hundreds of LED lights shining out. Those whose curiosity draws them closer are rewarded with a dynamic reaction triggered by movement—as long as you're really close to the monolith. The LEDs react to passersby in real time, mirroring changing light levels, displaying the movements of those who pass by.

300 Front Street West, Tridel, Back to Front, Jason Bruges StudioA mother and child enjoying 'Back to Front' by Jason Bruges Studio, image courtesy of Tridel

Jim Ritchie, Tridel’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, had a statement prepared upon the dedication of the work. “We believe that public art is a very important component of the condominium communities we develop. When done properly, public art serves to enhance the building architecture, landscape design and urban planning; it can act as a common amenity for residents, and stands as a reflection not just of the developer and the project, but of the condominium community, the neighbourhood and the city."

300 Front Street West, Tridel, Back to Front, Jason Bruges StudioThe Tridel team with Jason Bruges at the dedication of Back to Front, image courtesy of Tridel

Mr. Ritchie was on hand along with the team responsible for bringing Jason Bruges' piece into being at the works' dedication. Included left to right in the image above are Jim Ritchie, Tridel Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing; Andrea Calla, Tridel Executive; Bruno Giancola, Tridel ‎V.P of Construction Management; Jason Bruges, artist; Brad Golden, Brad Golden + Co, Public Art Consulting; Lavan Srinarayanadas, Condo Board President; Andres Valenzuela, Deltera Project Manager; and Alex Jamieson, Deltera Site Coordinator.
In our video below, a taste of the installation in action. Multiple passes reveal that you need to be close to get the installation to react to you in detail.

Residents are now occupying suites in the Wallman Architects-designed condo tower, with only seven suites from the exclusive Atmosphere Collection still available for purchase on the 44th through 49th floors. Remaining suites range in size from 1,367 to 1,815 square feet, starting at $1.2-million.

300 Front Street West, Tridel, Back to Front, Jason Bruges StudioRendering of Tridel's 300 Front Street West, image courtesy of Tridel

Additional information and renderings can be found in our dataBase file for the project, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum threads, or leave a comment in the space provided at the bottom of this page.