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May 17, 2012
Luis Jacob artfully eyes the walls of the Dufferin Street Underpass
On May 18, internationally acclaimed Toronto artist Luis Jacob will be joined by Councillor Gord Perks (Ward 14 Parkdale-High Park) and Councillor Ana Bailão (Ward 18 Davenport) to dedicate his new Dufferin Street Underpass public art project "Spirits of the Grotto" to the city.

The public is also invited to this dedication event, which takes place at 5 p.m. at the Dufferin Amphitheatre parkette at 1266 Queen St. W. The Dufferin Street Underpass (formerly the Dufferin Jog) runs from south of Queen Street to north of Peel Avenue.

"Spirits of the Grotto" consists of 34 perforated-metal panels bearing colourful, mosaic eye-shaped designs that gaze down on passing cars, cyclists and pedestrians.

Jacob, a long-time Parkdale resident, intended his open eye-shaped designs to evoke the presence of spirits who observe alertly and full of neighbourly care. Arranged in two rows facing one another across the underpass, these guardian spirits animate the space as a place alive with curiosity, respect for the heritage of our past, and caring alertness towards the future.

Jacob has become one of Canada's most prominent contemporary visual artists. Since showing his work at Germany's prestigious Documenta exhibition in 2007, he has been featured in solo and group exhibitions throughout Europe and North America. More information about the him is available at

Financing for this project came from the City of Toronto's Transportation Services Division and City Planning Urban Design. More information about the City of Toronto's Public Art program is available at

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people. Toronto's government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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Shane Gerard
Senior Communications Coordinator



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