Driving through downtown Vancouver at night, one might be tempted to call the police upon seeing this old townhouse building ablaze. ‘Fire with Fire’ is an apt enough name for this installation art piece by Isabelle Hayeur – the faux flames are meant to conjure images of destruction in this district of decay.
Despite the derelict nature of the neighborhood, there is a beauty in these old buildings being overlooked by developers who continue to tear them down in the name of progress. The Olympic events expedited their destruction like never before.
Historic preservation efforts often come too late, and amount to too little, which is what this project aims to change … by catching the eye, drawing attention to the problem before everything is wiped clean and rebuilt.
But one still has to wonder: can art go too far? It is hard to imagine there weren’t at least a few false positives when it came to the the fake fires seen on each floor of the structure – they were make realistic on purpose, but perhaps too much so.