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Speech Bubble

Speech Bubble

Jennifer Marman
b.1965

Daniel Borins
b.1974

Speech Bubble
  • Steel and LED screen
  • 2015
  • 3 m x 0.3 m x 3 m
  • 106 John Street, Toronto

About the artwork

Speech Bubble is a transformation of a standard LED screen into a communicative device through the clever use of a custom-designed frame. While the shape of the sculpture is a speech bubble as seen in cartoon and comic book drawings, the content of the work plays back abstract animated videos and an ironic commentary on the spoken and unspoken. This work plays heavily on the idea of things left unsaid. It also provides a focal point in the urban plaza in downtown Toronto. Cantilevered atop an inverted triangle that forms the neck of the speech bubble, the screen becomes part of an animated sculpture: its unique structure unifying form with function.

About the artist

Jennifer Marman and Daniel Borins have practiced sculpture, installation and media art in Toronto since 2000. Jennifer Marman is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario. Daniel Borins is a graduate of McGill University. Both Marman and Borins are also graduates of the Ontario College of Art and Design. The work of Marman and Borins is often intervention based – situating the visual arts within the context of everyday life, while simultaneously referring to aspects of the history of twentieth century art. Their projects identify tensions that arise in the politicization, historicization, and visuality of the artwork, often within the context of mass visual language, mass media, consumerism, and the way in which images circulate in the information age.

Fun facts

  • The duo have another public artwork in Toronto, The Water Guardians, that has bee realised for the West Don Lands neighbourhood.
  • The sculpture can been glimpse at in The Bold Type, one of the many TV productions that are using Toronto has their canvas.

Engagement questions

  • Was this intended to be a work of art or not, why? How does that impact your understanding of the artwork?