Meeting in Vancouver

"Meeting" by Wang Shugang (one of 8)
As is often the case, I know much more about a city once I've left it than before I visit it. Well I hope so, I hear you saying (I can hear you). See, since I do very little research about a place before the trip, I'm constantly surprised (I like surprises) by what's going on in the city. Just last month, I was pleasantly surprised by Restaurant Week in Sao Paulo. Vancouver was no different.

Thanks to Red Nomad OZ and the reddest interview I've ever given, I've returned to my photos of Vancouver and discovered that there was a Biennale in the city when I was there last year. The city was an enormous open-air art exhibit, and I just thought it was arty.

One group of sculptures that caught my eye of course was "Meeting" by the Chinese artist Wang Shugang. Among the interesting facts I learned HERE about this group of eight sculptures all crouching in a circle, I discovered that the installation is meant to represent the G-8. Interesting. All eight figures look Chinese to me. Hmmm. I guess that's better than trying to set Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy in stone . . . or bronze in this case. Each of the identical statues is 92 cm (3 feet) tall and weighs 100 kg (220 pounds).

Knowing now that I was actually there during the Biennale got me wondering. Maybe I'd taken pictures of other exhibits and just didn't know it. Well, goodness. After looking at the official exhibits HERE, I guess I missed a lot of them. I was in Vancouver for a very special reason. My two families were meeting for the first time. It was definitely a "Meeting" and it was great, emotional and important. I did take these pictures of Vancouver, though. And I'd like to think they're all art in their way.

A very special one--one that has stuck in my mind since my trip--is the mural at W. Hastings St. and Abbott. And I'm happy to say that now, several months after my trip, I actually know who painted it. It's a beautiful collaborative effort created by the artists Indigo, Titi Freak, Faith47 and Peeta. Since I concentrate more on single subjects in my photography, I chose to capture the girl blowing the dandelion, but the piece is much larger. To see it in its entirety, go HERE.

The Paint Your Faith Vancouver Mural -- Indigo, Faith47, Titi Freak and Peeta

Finally, check out my interview with Red Nomad OZ. She asked such incredible questions. I never knew how red life can be.

To continue with I Must Be Off! A-Z, go to W is for the Wild Wild West.

I must be off,


Christopher Allen is the author of Conversations with S. Teri O'Type (a Satire). Allen writes fiction, creative non-fiction and of course this here blog. His work has appeared in numerous places both online and in print. Read more about him HERE.


  1. STOP! I'm blushing!!! Thanx again for a fun interview and FAAAABULOUS photos!! Have a great Easter!! (being the queen of exclamation marks is a heavy burden)

  2. Stay awhile, don't rush off before I've had a chance to meet you.
    I was over at the Red Nomad's and saw the interview and became curious to find out more about you. An American living in Munich; a left-over American or a chose--to-live-in-Germany kind of American?

    I am a German who has chosen to live in the UK and who misses Germany. I am a little bemused by you saying that you know much more about a city after you've visited it than before. Yes, how would the opposite be possible?

  3. Hi. Friko,
    Thank you for stopping by. I was born in Germany but grew up in the US. I moved to Munich 17 years ago.

    My comment about knowing much more about a city after I visit it:

    There are people who read six books on a place before they visit it, so they actually know quite a bit before they travel--and maybe Not any more after the trip. I prefer to learn about the place while I'm there only.

  4. A bright thread of red running through this post. Only the second laughing bronze guy photo doesn't have any red. But he's rust-coloured, which is a sort of red. And the post begins and ends with Red Nomad, who also left the first comment. Amazing.
    Love the girl and dandelion.
    About your comment above, I'd like to add that sometimes, you can read six books about a place before going but still find, on arrival, that you know very little. I do like to read before I get there, and then discover the things that weren't covered in the books while also keeping an eye out for the things that were.


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