Monday, November 25, 2013

Panda prints in Chinatown

In the alleyway between the Chinese restaurant, Ju Xiang Juan, and the Somerset travel agency, is one of the Chinatown murals. This one is of a panda, though not the panda mural that has become iconic of Ottawa's Chinatown (that's a blog post for another day... maybe tomorrow):

(note: I've tweaked the above photo with Photoshop's lens distortion utility. What a versatile and useful tool!)

The mural on the side of the travel agency building is a colourful stencil print of a panda in bright colours. But look closer: those dots are themselves little pandas, each a set of three looking left, centre, and right. Each row of pandas is standing on the edge of a piece of the building's otherwise drab beige siding:

The other side of the alley had a certain je ne sais quoi to it that also caught my eye. The rough brick has an authentic quality to it, obviously having seen many iterations of graffiti, painting over, and sandblasting away. The mural project on Somerset had a dual purpose of livening up the place and deterring graffiti.

You can't see these types of angles while walking by on the sidewalk. If the panda prints hadn't drawn me in to the alley, I wouldn't have caught this view either!


  1. The two pandas that you like are the works of Anastasia Boguslavskaya as part of the collaborative project of the Ottawa School of Art & the Chinatown BIA.

    1. Thanks, Dawn. Before I posted this, I had gone back and taken note of Anastasia's name signed on the wall, but I didn't get around to adding it before the post was published. I'm glad you added that detail.