In a bold act of protest against Russian President Vladimir Putin’s devastating invasion of Ukraine, a resident of Kensington Market made a statement by commissioning from a local artist a lifelike hanging mannequin of Putin. When asked about the motivation behind it, the resident (who requested anonymity) explained they wanted to bring attention to the ongoing suffering and destruction caused by Putin’s actions. The installation is meant to be a symbol of solidarity while demonstrating the role of art and protest. By showing a lifelike portrayal of Putin, it compels us to confront the profound consequences that result from the decisions made by those in positions of great power.
Since The Scoop shared photos of the installation on the one-year anniversary of the invasion, it has attracted quite a bit of attention. Despite objections, complaints, and some visits from the police, the resident remains determined to keep the installation hanging from their Kensington Market balcony. When asked why they insist on maintaining it, they emphasized its powerful role in supporting those affected by the ongoing conflict. They firmly believe the installation should remain to spark discussions about the consequences of unchecked power. The resident also asserts their right to express themselves through art, as freedom of expression and artistic freedom are protected rights in Canada.
The Scoop has previously featured a business that used an unconventional method to draw attention to Putin’s actions. Art has always played a significant role in driving social and political change, stirring emotions, sparking discussions and encouraging us to think deeply. The hanging Putin installation in Kensington Market is a powerful example of art’s ability to shine a light on the darkest aspects of our world. 272 Augusta Avenue, Toronto.