Toronto

'Very unfortunate': Winter Stations art installation in The Beach removed due to damage

Organizers of the annual Winter Stations art exhibition on Woodbine Beach admit they should have probably "kid tested" one of the installations after they had to remove it due to damage this week. The exhibit, titled Noodle Feed, was taken down when its long tubular arms began tearing and leaking. 

Noodle Feed exhibit should probably have been 'kid tested,' organizer admits

The Noodle Feed installation on Woodbine Beach. Its long tubular arms made from sailcloth could not withstand the wear and tear. (CBC)

Organizers of the annual Winter Stations art exhibition on Woodbine Beach admit they should have probably "kid tested" one of the installations after they had to remove it due to damage this week.

The exhibit, titled Noodle Feed, was taken down when an inspection found the long tubular arms, made from recycled sailcloth and stuffed with straw, began tearing and leaking. 

"Unfortunately, it was in a state where we thought it would be in our best interests and the interests of the artists that we would remove the piece because it was kind of coming apart," said Aaron Hendershott, organizer of the Winter Stations art project.

Hendershott says the damage wasn't the result of vandalism, but "wear and tear" due to its popularity. 

 As with all the installations, which are designed to encourage people to explore, climb and even jump on the artwork, visitors had been invited to move the arms and turn them into chairs, beds and shelters and share their experiences using an augmented reality app.

"We decided that it would be in everyone's best interests to pull that piece off of the beach. Very unfortunate," Hendershott told CBC Toronto.

Noodle Feed's many arms were stuffed with straw. They began leaking from tears in the fabric. (CBC)

This week, visitors looking for the installation only found some piles of straw left behind.

"Durability was an issue. Maybe we should get it kid tested next time," Hendershott told CBC Toronto.

Noodle Feed was designed by three artists from iheartblob, an award-winning Austrian architectural design studio, says Hendershott, an architect with a group called RAW Design.

"I think maybe that piece may have gotten the hug of death from all the kids who were loving it and playing with it," said Hendershott.

"I think it might have to do with wear and tear and and people of all ages jumping all over it ... That was somewhat how it was intended to be used, but maybe it was not as robust as we'd hoped."

Aaron Hendershott, organizer of Winter Stations art project, says Noodle Feed might have been a victim of its own popularity. (CBC)

But Noodle Feed will live on in the virtual world, he says. Visitors to the installation uploaded photos and stories of their experiences that can be still be seen by other users. 

"These things happen with outdoor temporary art installations," said Anna Sebert, the executive director of the Beach Village Business Improvement Area.

"It just goes to show how many people really liked it. Kids were all over it. It would have been great to see it out the whole time, but it's just the nature of the event."

Anna Sebert, the executive director of the Beach Village BIA, says it would have been great if the installation survived until the end of the festival, but Noodle Feed lives on in the virtual world. (submitted)

The remaining three Winter Stations installations are Mirage from Madrid; Kaleidoscope of the Senses from Scotland; and The Beach's Percussion Ensemble from Centennial College.

They will remain up until March 30.

About the Author

Philip Lee-Shanok

Senior Reporter, CBC Toronto

From small town Ontario to Washington D.C., Philip has covered stories big and small. An award-winning reporter with more than two decades of experience in Ontario and Alberta, he's now a Senior Reporter for CBC Toronto on television, radio and online. He is also a National Reporter for The World This Weekend on Radio One. Follow him on Twitter @CBCPLS.

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