A necessity for safely partitioning a construction site from the surrounding public realm, wooden hoarding is a familiar sight for pedestrians traversing our downtown streets. Owing to their temporary nature, construction hoarding is often utilitarian in nature, either composed of unpainted wood fibre or covered in branding for the associated project. To lessen the impact of the construction site for their new Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, the University of Toronto and the City of Toronto have worked together to commission a new 276-foot/84 metre art installation along the project's hoarding, the longest single graffiti installation in the city of Toronto.

Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, University of TorontoGraffiti mural seen from St. George Street, image by UrbanToronto Forum contributor salsa

Painted by artist Jason Wing, known in the graffiti world as SKAM, the mural features over 50 unique design elements ranging from familiar Toronto experiences like a streetcar at a traffic light, to the more abstract elements like the famous video game Space Invaders. The key below shows off the individual images that come together to form the mural: connect it with the interactive legend on this page, and you'll get the full story behind this story-laden work!

Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, University of TorontoGraffiti mural on the hoarding of U of T's Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, image courtesy of U of T

Some of the images pay homage to the many innovations fostered by the University, inlcuding the solar vehicle 'Horizon', and an ultra-efficient light bulb called the Nanoleaf. Also depicted are wind turbines, a satellite, and other technological developments associated with U of T Engineering.

Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, University of TorontoGraffiti mural seen from St. George Street, image by UrbanToronto Forum contributor salsa

Artist Jason Wing is renowned in Toronto's underground art community, and is one of the graffitists responsible for colourful art in the well-known "Graffiti Alley" south of Queen Street West in Toronto's Fashion District.

The U of T art installation will be on display on the Centre for Engineering Innovation & Entrepreneurship construction hoarding on St. George Street until work on the new Montgomery Sisam Architects and Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios-designed institutional building is completed in 2017. The mural will also be featured in the upcoming 10th annual Scotiabank Nuit Blanche.

Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, University of TorontoRendering of the Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, image courtesy of U of T

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