Posts Tagged ‘social networking’
Colin Horgan’s essay at MacLean’s, meditating on the power of photography and the dynamics of group identity and more in the story of one Blue Jay fan’s thrown beer, caught my attention.
Four rows from the bottom and one row to the left of Canadian Press photographer Frank Gunn’s shot from Tuesday is a woman wearing a backwards baseball cap and a blue sweatshirt. The sweatshirt is a limited Blue Jays run by Peace Collective, a Toronto fashion company. Printed across the front is the phrase it has recently popularized: Toronto Vs. Everybody.
In front of her, head bowed, staring straight ahead, stands a man now identified as Ken Pagan.
In the bottom of the seventh inning of the Blue Jays wild card game against the Baltimore Orioles, someone threw a mostly full king can of Bud Light onto the field during play, narrowly missing Orioles’ left fielder Hyun Soo Kim as he tracked a fly ball. A moment later, this photograph was taken. And in the days that have followed, the picture consumed Toronto—because of what it shows as much as because of what it might not show.
In the hours that followed the incident, the people in this photo came to reflect the city as a whole, the majority of the faces within it marked with either incredulity or confusion. Seconds after the beer can nearly hit Kim, social media filled in equal measure with regret and remorse. When it emerged that during the same game, others had tossed not beer but racial barbs, the apologies redoubled. Toronto, so accustomed to having the finger pointed its way, so accustomed to apologizing for itself, that someone made it into a T-shirt slogan, quickly tread a well-worn path. We are sorry, everybody. But you see, while that crowd is us, also it is not. Only some of us are racists. Only one of us is a beer thrower.
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Toronto’s Graffiti Alley is one of the most Instagrammed spots in the city – it really does make a great background for broody, pseudo-gritty fashion shoots. But now this downtown laneway is a star in its own right thanks to a new project by Heritage Toronto and Havas Worldwide Canada, an advertising firm.
Called Instatour, this Instagram-based projects stitches together 1,300 separate posts to create the longest continuous Instagram photo in the world. The result is quite stunning, but make sure you check out graffitialley.to on mobile. Simply turn your phone sideways and scroll away.
Local photographer Justin Poulsen documented Graffiti Alley for three weeks earlier this year. His work gives viewers a glimpse at this iconic Toronto spot at a specific moment in time.
“Heritage Toronto is thrilled to be involved in this innovative project commemorating a key site in our city’s intangible cultural heritage,” says Heritage Toronto executive director Francisco Alvarez in a news release.
“It’s a reminder that even our recent past can be fleeting, and how important it is to celebrate moments of creation like Graffiti Alley that create a distinctive sense of place and pride in Toronto.”
The Instagram account, graffitialley.to, is worth checking out. For people not on mobile, the below video provides a taste.