Each section of ASC 201 has been allocated a wandering line in the city of Toronto. Students were asked to carry out four tasks in relation to that line for this first project of the winter semester:

  • Walk the line. Spend a few hours in the cold January weather walking the line. Follow the line from beginning to end and then back again. Go with a friend, go back alone. Talk to people. Get a coffee. Document what you find in photographs, sketches, notes, sound recordings.

  • Make an object. Make an assemblage from objects you have collected on your walk. Everything in the assemblage (except glue) must be found on the line. Objects can be purchased, scavenged, found. The assemblage you make should tell us something about the line and should be no larger than 200mmx300mmx300mm high. All objects used in the assemblage should be documented in their original location on the line using photography.

  • Write a story. Write a story about the line. Like all good stories, it should focus on one or more characters you encounter on your walks, and the story should tell us something important you have discovered. The story should take no more than five minutes to tell.

  • Draw it. Using the conventions of architectural drawing, - plan, section, elevation and so on - prepare a single drawing of your assemblage as an occupied structure. In order to do this you will need to consider (among other things) the following: Where is the assemblage to be situated? It should be somewhere along your line. What is the scale of the assemblage? In other words, how big is it? How will people use the structure? What will they do in, on and around it? What needs to be added, beyond the assemblage you have built, in order to allow this occupation?

In a nice little town, on a nice little street, in a nice little house, is where Little Dog lived. “Today is going to be special,” said Little Dog as he prepared for his adventure.
Lurk the Grouch, Lurk the Foul, Lurk the Greedy

Today was Little Dog’s birthday. He was finally old enough to go to the park all by himself. “Be back before dark,” he heard his mother say as he dashed out of the door. First he passed by Mrs. Dewson who was standing on her porch. Her house was grand, with big white columns, polished to a shine. When Little Dog told her where he was going she frowned. She said “Don’t go near Lurk, that stinky bear.” At the mere thought she gagged. Mrs. Dewson wished him good luck as he walked down the stairs to continue on his way. Next he passed by Mr. Crawford who was watering the garden. His house was old, with a might tower, reaching to the sky. When Little Dog told him where he was going, he frowned. He said “Don’t talk to Lurk, that mean old bear.” At the mere thought he withered. Mr. Crawford wished him good health as he passed onto the sidewalk to continue on his way.

No one in the town liked Lurk. Lurk the Grouch, Lurk the Foul, Lurk the Greedy, were all names he had earned. As for Little Dog, he didn’t know Lurk, but he had heard enough from the town to know that Lurk was awful.
“Don’t go near Lurk,” said Mrs. Dewson. “Don’t talk to Lurk,” said Mr. Crawford. Little Dog played in the park, swung on the swings, slid down the slide and teetered on the teeter totter all day long. In fact, he was having so much fun that he forgot what his mother said. The sun’s last light passed through the trees and Little Dog was stuck. The sunny park had turned into a maze of darkening bush.

Little Dog looked left and right, and right and left, but he couldn’t find the way. His route back home had been concealed by the pitch black night. He only saw one lonely streetlight standing by itself. But under this streetlight stood none other than Lurk. “Don’t go near Lurk,” said Mrs. Dewson. “Don’t talk to Lurk,” said Mr. Crawford; but in that moment Little Dog knew it was all he had left. Suddenly, as he approached, Lurk dashed from his post and charged towards Little Dog. “Is this the end?” Little Dog shouted, with fear in his eyes. Lurk looked up in confusion “You look lost,” he said. Little Dog lowered his guard. Lurk continued, “and trapped, and scared… reminds me of myself.” Before Little Dog could speak, outstretched Lurk’s arm “Maybe this could help you find your way back to your house.” Little Dog looked down and in Lurk’s palm laid an old flashlight, “I’ve had this since I was a boy, but you need it more than I do.” Lurk handed Little Dog the light and then went on his way. As Little Dog walked home he thought to himself “maybe Lurk isn’t as bad as they all said.”

Toronto Metropolitan Department of  Architectural Science Toronto, CA.