King Edward VII Equestrian Statue Floating Down the Don
Join performance artists Life of a Craphead every Sunday from October 29–November 19 as they drop a statue into the Lower Don River.
1–4pm every Sunday, Oct 29–Nov 19
Join performance artists Life of a Craphead for a series of performances in which they drop a life-size replica statue of King Edward VII into the Lower Don River. The sculpture will float down the river between Riverdale Park and Queen Street before it is retrieved for its next journey.
In Queen’s Park, Toronto, sits a 15-foot bronze equestrian statue of King Edward VII. The statue was originally erected in Delhi, India in 1922 to commemorate King Edward VII’s historic role as the Emperor of India. After independence in India, the statue was removed, to be destroyed; years later a prominent Toronto resident and art collector brought the statue to Toronto in appreciation of its craftsmanship. It was placed in Queen’s Park in 1969 despite public outcry and criticism.
Life of a Craphead’s project explores the histories and decisions that continue to shape Toronto’s public space and public art. Their performance will create the illusion that this statue has been “dumped” in the Don River. With both humour and a sharp critical eye, the project addresses the persistence of power as it manifests in public art and public monuments – symbols that are often preserved in perpetuity, even when the stories we want to celebrate change.
Walk from Queen Street and Riverdale Park between 1-4pm and discover the sculpture for yourself!
Please abide by all TRCA and City of Toronto by-laws. Members of the public are encouraged to view the work from designated trails and sidewalks as indicated on our map.
This project is possible with the support of the Toronto Arts Council.
About Life of a Craphead
Life of a Craphead is the collaboration of Amy Lam and Jon McCurley since 2006. Their work spans performance art, film and curation. Performance projects include The Life of a Craphead Fifty Year Retrospective, 2006-2056 (Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, 2013), an fake career retrospective of all the work they will ever make; Double Double Land Land (Gallery TPW, Toronto, 2009), a play interrupted by a staged wedding; and Free Lunch (2007), a public, anonymously-advertised free lunch serving everything on the menu of a Chinese restaurant.
Their first feature film Bugs (72 min., 2016) has screened in Canada and the U.S., including at Night Gallery, Los Angeles; The Western Front, Vancouver; Parsons School for Design, NYC; The Khyber Centre for the Arts, Halifax; and S1, Portland, among others. Life of a Craphead also ran and hosted the popular performance art show and online broadcast Doored (2012–2017), which has featured work by over 100 artists. Between 2006–2009, Life of a Craphead performed frequently at live comedy shows including at Laugh Sabbath (Toronto) and UCB Theatre (L.A. & NYC).
Life of a Craphead have been artists-in-residence at the Macdowell Colony, U.S.; the Banff Centre, Canada; Department of Safety, Anacortes, U.S.; Wunderbar, U.K.; New Space Arts Foundation, Hue, Vietnam; and Struts/Faucet in Sackville, NB, Canada. They are the recipients of grants and awards from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and the Toronto Arts Council. Their work has been featured in Canadian Art, C Magazine, Vice, and Art in America. They are Chinese and Vietnamese and live and work in Toronto, Canada.
Public can view the work from designated viewer areas along the Don River.
Please see our map for viewing areas.
This event is wheelchair-accessible.