Third Garden

Third Garden

Location:
Assembly Hall, Lakeshore grounds , 1 Colonel Samuel Smith Park Drive , South Etobicoke, ON, M8V 4B6, Canada
Artwork creator(s): 
Chen, Millie; Quigley, Warren
Text author(s): 
Chen, Millie; Quigley, Warren
Installation year: 
2002
Description: 

Third Garden is designed as a monument to local memory. This garden refers to the past use of the surrounding grounds as a healing site for psychiatric care, and to current day use as regenerated land, some of which has become a rehabilitated nature reserve. The installation integrates landscape design with sculptural elements to convey playful associations with psychiatric care (i.e. the couch and the serpent) and with the specific history of the site. The text in the pavers is based on oral and recorded histories of the former Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital, rewritten in the tone of intimate journal entries from the point of view of patients, relatives, staff and local residents.

Text of the artwork: 

Chickens. Beautiful meals.

 

August 25, 1921

You should see our sea of cabbages!

 

June 30, 1932

Went out with the other patients to cut and rake the grass, pick strawberries form the garden between the Assembly Hall and the Nurses’ Residence. Got a good workout. Came in good and hungry. Tired. West straight to bed after our meal.

 

October 11, 1958

The gardens have been taken away from us. We can’t work in them anymore. Something about cheap labour.

 

December 3, 1959

We went to see him today. We sat in the car afterwards. My daughter said, ‘That’s my brother’ and I said, ‘That’s my son.’ It was a very sad time.

 

September 1, 1979

They’re closing the hospital soon. They loaded us up this morning. We’re being taken to a place we don’t know. Some cried.

 

There is something revelational about walking daily in a familiar place.

Text theme: 
Notes about oral history, meetings with individuals from the community, former patients (and their family members) and former employees of the former Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital (formerly the scene of the work) as well as community members present. All identities are confidential.
Artwork theme: 

Local history, therapy (psychiatric) history and the sense of well-being conveyed by the scenery

History: 

Assembly Hall, Lakeshore grounds, South Etobicoke (Toronto), since 2002.

Note(s): 

The text simulates quotes. However, it is a fiction narrative, based on or rather inspired by historical documents and oral history of the former Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital.

 

The installation of this artwork was part of renovations of historic buildings and landscaping redevelopment in the city of Toronto.

Document(s): 

Third Garden unveiling evokes history and art cultivation in west end of City

Jones, Irene (2002).  Third Garden unveiling evokes history and art cultivation in west end of City. Canada NewsWire. (September 25), p. 1