Julian Hou’s Chintzware (2017) considers the station lobby as a space of transition. The abstracted form of the steering wheel creates an ornamental repetitive pattern across the windows that’s reminiscent of designs found on textiles and ceramics, from which the title of the work derives. As the light filters through the work, the slight changes within the pattern resemble the function of a camera shutter.
Rendered through Photoshop, Chintzware uses the post-production software as a means to replicate and transform the image of the steering wheel into an iconic form. Viewed en masse, the tightly arranged pattern suggests excess or hypermobility. This pattern is intermittently interrupted by ties that bind some of the steering wheels together, nullifying the wheel’s functionality of control, intended direction, and guidance of perpetual motion. These binds suggest a stasis and fixed position, similar to that of the photographer’s perspective from behind the lens.
While the transitory nature of the station on the one hand suggests constant movement, the space also functions as a waiting area rather than solely a conduit for outbound travel. A place of shelter, awaiting the arrival of your connecting mode of transport, a meeting point, or simply a place to bide time.
The Broadway–City Hall Station is curated by Artspeak.
For the multi-sited public art project On and Off the Road, Capture has installed photo-based artworks on the exteriors of Canada Line stations across Vancouver. The series broadly considers how modes of mass transportation can simultaneously be places of intense control while remaining emblems of freedom and adventure in the Western pop cultural imagination. The artworks consider the road narrative in modern and contemporary art, literature, and film, as well as the limits of that narrative and the need for alternatives.
Presented in partnership by
Capture Photography Festival and the Canada Line Public Art Program—InTransit BC