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Papa’s artful advice: Slow down

Hal Ingberg’s large public art work in Gatineau is called Papa, but it’s no companion piece to Louise Bourgeois’ 30-foot-tall giant bronze spider named Maman that stands in front of the National Gallery of Canada.

Hal Ingberg’s large public art work in Gatineau is called Papa, but it’s no companion piece to Louise Bourgeois’ 30-foot-tall giant bronze spider named Maman that stands in front of the National Gallery of Canada.

Papa is much more abstract. It’s a four-section structure made up of multi-coloured, transparent glass walls that creates a small public plaza at the intersection of des Allumettières and Maisonneuve boulevards.

Across from the glass structure is a bench so people can observe shadows produced by six different-coloured glass panes.

“This work is intended to create something where we slow down even for just a moment. The fast process of living slows down and we become a community,” said Ingberg, a Montreal-based artist and architect.

The panes start at 10 feet tall, but rise to a peak over 40 feet — a tower for fast moving cars — with a slower, smaller scale closer to the path further down the road.

Papa is the first non-commemorative piece of public art commissioned by the National Capital Commission in almost 20 years and forms part of the larger development for the area as gateway to Confederation Boulevard.