A travelling plastic protest perks up the downtown


by Paul Dechene

Have you walked by Atlantis Coffee on Vic and Hamilton lately and come away wondering what’s up with the Kinder Toys protesting colonialism in the window next door?

The display, titled “The Little People” is the work of a Toronto-based artist collective called Workparty. Regina Downtown invited them to town to participate in 2016’s Pop Up Downtown event, and their traveling Kinder Toy protest is designed to reflect the concerns and issues of wherever it touches down. Moved by the prolonged Colonialism No More protest outside the Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada on Albert Street, Workparty put the aboriginal protesters’ signs and slogans into the wee plastic hands of their collection — including one placard that reads “Bring Donuts.” (Everyone knows donuts power the revolution.)

Workparty’s “The Little People” is one of eight different displays that have been put up in windows around downtown for Pop Up. The other participating artists are Laura Hale, Belinda Harrow, Eric Hill, Jeff Meldrum, Keith Moulding, Zoe Schneider and Janet Wang. You can find their work in the Saskatchewan Energy Building, TD Bank, Salon Snax, Carlson Wagonlit, Rouge Nightclub and NWL.

This year, Pop Up’s theme is “Walking: Bodies in Urban Space”, and seeks to explore the meditative and physical impacts of the act of walking — whether you’re walking to work, your car, or marching in a protest. Pop Up kicks off with a launch Sept. 17 and runs through to the end of the year. For more information, check out reginadowntown.ca.

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