Polar Bear: Native to Vancouver by Tony Pantages launches December 5 and runs to December 18 on the Canada Line video screens. One of 15 public art projects commissioned by the City of Vancouver’s Public Art Program for Vancouver 125, Polar Bear: Native to Vancouver is the seventh in the 10 Seconds series of commissioned works for the Canada Line video screens as part of a year-long project celebrating Vancouver 125.
Polar Bear: Native to Vancouver is a tribute to the annual New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim in Vancouver. Started by Peter Pantages in 1920 with ten members, this is the oldest and largest Polar Bear Swim and is the genesis of the worldwide Polar Bear Swim movement. Tony Pantages, a third-generation Vancouverite and a filmmaker, attaches a personal history to this public tradition. For half a century his grandfather, Peter, took his daily dip in English Bay 365 days a year through sun, rain, snow, sleet and hail. Polar Bear: Native to Vancouver pays homage to his grandfather Peter, father Tony Sr., and uncle Basil, who all appear in this 10-second film.
Tony Pantages is an extraordinary storyteller, avid Vancouver historian and award-winning commercial and music video director. A self described Viewsician, he also creates live visual mixes alongside the world’s best DJs and musicians at some of the biggest music festivals in the world. He recently performed at the DXB Festival in Dubai; Coachella in California; and the Ultra Music Festival in Miami. His short film Dovetale won Best in Category at the 2010 Toronto Urban Film Festival. He is currently shooting a feature film Three Days in Havana with co-director Gil Bellows.
Polar Bear: Native to Vancouver launches December 5 on the Canada Line subway video screens and on www.youtube.com/offonmain and Facebook. A new work is featured each month on the Canada Line through March 2012, playing every two minutes to an audience of over 100,000 commuters per day.
See previous projects Hippie Chick by Dana Claxton, Slash Forward by Michael Turner, One Percent by James Yan, Movement For Two Grannies by Laiwan, An Ode To Vancouver Hockey Fans by Jeff Chiba Stearns and Escape Velocity on YouTube or at www.onmaingallery.com.
10 Seconds is curated by Paul Wong and presented by On Main in partnership with InTransitBC. Commissioned by the City of Vancouver Public Art Program with the support of Vancouver 125 and the participation of the Government of Canada.
The 2011 Public Art Program focuses on opportunities for residents and visitors to enjoy unique images, objects and perspectives on Vancouver and British Columbia for the City’s anniversary year. Details about Vancouver’s Public Art Program can be found at vancouver.ca/publicart. The program has facilitated over a hundred projects in the past ten years, spanning large-scale permanent installations, design-team collaborations and artist-initiated artworks.