by Terry Murray
note: When reader Terry Murray
wrote to say that she was a Toronto gargoyle/ grotesque spotter,
our first reaction was... Toronto? (Did she mean Quebec?).
But it turns out, like those in New York, stone beasties are just
waiting to be discovered in the Canadian city of steel
and glass. Of course, it helps if you know where to look
(click on thumbnails to enlarge):
first one is from Toronto's Old City Hall. The front entrance
is adorned with caricatures of city councillors of the late 19th
century, of which this is one. Carver Arthur Tennison also included
a stone carving of the building's architect, E.J. Lennox.
"The second is from the campus
of the University of Toronto. It's one of a set of six hidden
in the corners of an archway, and not one of the oft-photographed
of Toronto figures. I view this guy and his pals as my
personal discoveries. They're only about 12 feet up, but no one
seems to notice them.
been to photograph them several times - I needed several tries
because the light is low - and invariably people who walk by and
look up to see what I'm shooting comment on the figures. Each
time one or two people have said to me, 'You know, I walk through
here every day and I've never seen these before...'
developed the habit of looking up, especially when I'm in another
city. That earned me this prize
when I was in Washington, D.C. last
the street, I noticed what looked like several Atlases on the
roof of a 1920s apartment building in the Dupont Circle area.
They seemed to be holding the earth over their heads. But when
I looked through my 300mm lens, I saw that they had horns!
building manager let me go to the roof to get a closer look, where
I shot two rolls of film. She also showed me the building's entry
in "Best Addresses: A Century of Washington's Distinguished
Apartment Houses," which described the figures as 'demons
getting ready to drop boulders on intruders...' "
Murray is Clinical Editor for The Medical Post
in Toronto, Canada. All photos © Terry Murray 2002.