Team Durling

Images of the design concept

Team members

Design intent

The Lens

Dedicated to the queer community, specifically, the survivors of the LGBT Purge, who endured a profoundly discriminatory government campaign, ‘The Lens’ honours those who speak truth to power, choose action over complacency, and celebrate pride over despair. They carve space from a hostile environment to stand proud, sending out a message of inclusivity and resilience.

Inviting all to “come in,” in the light of day, the pearlescent form rises in delicate contrast to the parliamentary setting. At night, it exudes an other-worldly ephemerality. Inside, it bonds us together, to share experiences, celebrate, and commemorate, holding space for all who enter. The landscape answers in swells and slacks of planting, containing dispersed interpretive installations. Supported by a framework of the seven grandparent teachings, installations in each space tell the stories of community resilience, drawing visitors through the park, sharing unique insights into the community’s history, and a carving path for its future.


Transcript of the 2SLGBTQI+ National Monument Team Durling video

Video length: 1:31 minutes

The visual elements are renderings, video images and 3D animation.

[Text on screen: 2SLGBTQI+ National Monument

Team Durling

Fathom Studio - Darmouth/Kjipuktuk - Nova Scotia

Two Row Architect - Six Nations of the Grand River - Ontario

MVRDV – Rotterdam – The Netherlands]

[Images of a polygraph machine with beeping sound and the hand of a person filling out a chart]

Voice of Margot Durling: “Most people don’t know about the Purge.”

[Images of person adjusting microscope and taking notes]

Voice of Margot Durling: “Our people were surveilled, dehumanized, and held under the microscope,”

[Close-up Image of person’s eye]

Voice of Margot Durling: “like a science experiment.”

[Soft music and image of Margot Durling]

Text on screen: [Margot Durling – they/them, Visual Artist + Creative Director, Fathom Studio]

[Image of a sketch of a lens shape]

Voice of Margot Durling: “For this National Monument,”

[Animated image of a pink lens with arrows going down and through the shape]

Voice of Margot Durling: “We have reclaimed the very lens that oppressed us.”

[Animated image of the lens changing shape and forming the ring-like shape of the monument]

Voice of Margot Durling: “To invite an outward view of acceptance and belonging.

Carving a new space for community”

[Animated image of two circles and a horizontal line, changing into a rectangle]

Voice of Margot Durling: “To heal—To reflect—And to grow”

[Animated image of an ring with a pink triangle at each end]

Voice of Margot Durling: “At the heart of the form is the pink triangle – a symbol of our community’s history”

[Animated image side view of the ring showing how it is angled up from the ground]

Voice of Margot Durling: “Landing on unceded territory

The Lens rises up from the landscape, defying gravity in a feat of active resistance”

[Animated image the ring with concentric circles around it]

Voice of Margot Durling: “The landscape responds, pushing to the edges of the site. In celebration of the seven grandparent teachings”

[Rendering of an overhead view of the monument site]

[Rendering of the approach from Portage Bridge to the monument site, the landscaping, The Lens and numerous people]

Voice of Margot Durling: “Looking outward, the Lens acknowledges that we have always existed”

[Rendering of a close-up of the main monument element, The Lens at dawn]

Voice of Margot Durling: “Within the monuments and institutions that surround us”

[Rendering of a close-up of the main monument element, The Lens in winter]

Voice of Margot Durling: “In the daytime, we wear our armour”

[Rendering of a close-up of the main monument element, The Lens at night during a celebration]

Voice of Margot Durling: “At night we show our true colours, a duality built on survival”

[Rendering of the approach from Portage Bridge with a procession heading to the monument site]

Voice of Margot Durling: “This monument is less artifact, and more action”

[Rendering of a ceremony taking place under The Lens]

Voice of Margot Durling: “A safe space for our community and a precedent for the world”

[Animated text on screen: The Lens]

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