Baby, It’s Cold Outside #CrazyWeather

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

You really know it’s winter in Canada when thousands of travelers are delayed at the country’s busiest airports, when temperatures hover around -30 (or even lower in the mid-west), and the streets are covered by heavy snow and ice.

On the heels of Toronto’s recent ice storm, Pattison Outdoor, in partnership with the Cape Farewell Foundation, present a newly created version of media artist and curator Sharon Switzer’s digital video project #crazyweather for Pattison’s giant video billboard in downtown Toronto. The video billboard is located at the corner of Yonge and Edward Streets, just north of Dundas Square, an area that sees more than 100,000 pedestrians daily. #CrazyWeather, part of Pattison’s ongoing Art in Transit programming, is currently on display until January 31, 2014.


Switzer’s #CrazyWeather is a video series that includes recent tweets about Toronto’s ice storm, along with individual tweets from the past year about the unexpected and extreme weather experienced in different parts of the world. The tweets are juxtaposed with an image of Earth as seen from space. The cumulative effect of these messages highlights the extent to which climate change affects all of our lives.

“This is the first time Switzer has shown her own artwork on Pattison screens,” says Claire Sykes, curator with Cape Farewell, “but #crazyweather is the perfect project to show in such a large scale public venue, as it speaks to a community of strangers commenting on the same very relevant issue.”

Pattison is a supporter of the original 10 minute, 2-channel video version #crazyweather which is located at the Royal Ontario Museum’s Roloff Beny Gallery, and introduces visitors to the Carbon 14: Climate is Culture Exhibition.

Carbon 14: Climate is Culture Exhibition + Festival runs until February, 2014, and features multifaceted programs, including Carbon 14: Climate is Culture exhibition at the ROM, presented by ROM Contemporary Culture and Cape Farewell; a performing arts festival with The Theatre Centre; a rich series of public programs and events; and a resonant series of screen-based public exhibitions in partnership with Pattison Onestop. Toronto.

Established by artist David Buckland in 2001, Cape Farewell has successfully bought together artists and scientists to address the realities of climate change and envision creative solutions, showcasing what a resilient and exciting future may look like. Cape Farewell is based in the Science Museum’s Dana Centre in London, UK and its North American foundation is based at the MaRS Centre in Toronto.

Sharon Switzer has exhibited in Canada and internationally since the early 1990s. For the past seven years her curatorial focus has been to bring art to urban screens. She is founder of Art for Commuters and is the Arts Programmer and Curator for Pattison Onestop.

Leave a Reply