As part of theSHOW.13’s biannual exhibition, Iga Janik, the curator at Cambridge Galleries invited me to create an artwork anywhere within the immediate vicinity. I looked at the nearby parking lot, basketball court, and the Grand River embankment. However, I was drawn towards the University of Waterloo School of Architecture and its courtyard which faces onto Melville Street South. Much of the School’s present-day layout honour’s the floor plans of the original building – formerly known as Riverside Silk Mill – which are on display in the main hallway.
The vacancy was the most appealing thing for me about the marbled courtyard; it invited improvisation. I would describe it as a public oasis of rails, ramps, and terraces, and from what I could see, it gets its fair share of skateboarders and BMX freestylers. I myself played with the idea of dropping in a floor plan from above, letting the drawing fall onto the courtyard, and coming to rest on top of the existing surface. The physical activity associated with drawing this kind of ad-hoc floor plan is mostly about improvising with the existing courtyard structure, the walls, the terrace, etc.