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Environmental and Sustainability Education

On a Wing and a Prayer

Art Installation   2017

Like many pollinating species, butterflies face great challenges in the 21st century.  Climate change, habitat loss, declining biodiversity, depletion of food sources, and pesticide/herbicide use are depleting butterfly populations at an alarming rate.  Butterflies, along with bees and other insects, are key to pollinating the food plants we rely on for our existence, so helping to ensure their survival also helps to ensure ours. This art installation was created by OISE students to raise awareness about these issues.

The students used aluminum pop cans to create this kaleidoscope of butterflies, drawing on photographs of Ontario butterflies as inspiration: Monarchs, Swallowtails, and Coppers are just a few that were closely examined. This installation is part of the 'Take the Stairs' Campaign, a walking art gallery that encourages our community to take the stairs rather than elevators (saving energy and improving health and wellness of the walkers). 

Artists: Graduate Students from OISE's Teacher Education Programs. 

Special recognition goes to OISE student Jessie Sawyers and faculty member Hilary Inwood for facilitating this project, and to OISE students Lizzie Sproat and Alison Szawiola for assisting with the installation.


Please visit the other eco-artworks in the main OISE stairwell, concourse subway entrance, and in the OISE Library near the Seed Catalogue. For more information about the Environmental & Sustainability Education Initiative at OISE,  visit www.oise/utoronto.ca/ese

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