Winter Stations opens design competition in anticipation of return to Woodbine Beach in 2022

The Kaleidoscope of the Senses was one of the Winter Stations 2020 installations on Woodbine Beach. Winter Stations did not take place on Woodbine Beach last winter due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Beach Metro News file photo by Alan Shackleton.

The eighth annual Winter Stations outdoor art exhibit and international competition is slated to return to Woodbine Beach this coming winter after a one-year hiatus.

“The competition captures the imagination of local and international designers, asking them to transform the utilitarian lifeguard stations along Toronto’s east-end beaches into whimsical works of public art,” stated a Winter Stations press release.

As it is outdoors, Winter Stations is moving forward with the competition for a safe and socially distanced exhibition. Deadline for art installation submissions is Nov. 25.

“In a time where outdoor spaces have never been more vital, Winter Stations is calling on the design community to submit their visions as registration opens for the 2022 competition,” read the press release.

Although Toronto’s beaches are typically less frequented during the colder months, Winter Stations hopes to draw out residents to explore interactive installations.

“The star of Winter Stations has always been the beach, and the unique winter setting it provides. With the openness of the landscape, and the distance between each lifeguard stand, we’re excited to once again come back to The Beach community in 2022,” said Winter Stations founder Roland Rom Colthoff.

According to the press release, all installations will be temporarily constructed for six weeks and must be able to withstand the unpredictability and harshness of Toronto’s winter weather.

Winter Stations 2022 aims to build out four to six lifeguard stations at Woodbine Beach slated to be unveiled Family Day weekend (Feb. 21, 2022). Visitors can view the installations until March 31, 2022.

For 2022, Winter Stations will be partnering with Guelph University and Ryerson University to allow young designers the opportunity to showcase their work.

Beaches East-York Councillor Brad Bradford said it’s exciting the competition is back at Woodbine Beach.

“It has been a challenging moment for us all, but events like this bring light and energy to the cold, dark winter months. For years, Winter Stations has brought people together from all over the world to celebrate art and community,” he said.

This year’s theme is “Resilience” to recognize and celebrate the courage of people and their ability to withstand challenging times and recover.

“This year, we not only reflect on all the ways people have had to be resilient, but the ways people have channeled this resilience, be it through communities, movements, support networks and more,” reads the press release.

Winter Stations asks that designers conceptualize their works to be viewed and experienced up-close, from far away, in person, and virtually. The competition is open to entries from around the world and winning teams will be awarded $2,500.

For more info about the competition and submission guidelines, visit

Winter Stations was founded by RAW Architects, Ferris + Associates and Curio in 2015, and is sponsored by The Beach BIA, Sud Group. Minto Communities, Sali Tabacchi Branding and Design, and Meevo Digital.

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