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Menkes Speculum. (Image supplied by Menkes Developments; Photo by Paul Casselman) (CNW Group/Menkes Developments Ltd.)

‘Guard with Balloon Dog’ unveiled in downtown Toronto

Menkes Developments Ltd. (Menkes), a Toronto-based, fully integrated real estate firm unveiled on February 13, 2017 a public art installation in downtown Toronto, featuring a stencil attributed to the anonymous British artist Banksy, referred to as ‘Guard with Balloon Dog’.

The piece was originally applied to the rear façade of the vacant building previously situated at 90 Harbour Street in May 2010, when Banksy visited Toronto following the release of his film, Exit Through the Gift Shop.

In 2011, the 90 Harbour Street property was purchased by Menkes and redeveloped into a mixed-use project, encompassing two million square feet of residential and commercial space. The project features two 66 and 70-storey condominium towers.

Aware of the Banksy work on the building’s façade, demolition crews were instructed to protect the panels of limestone on which the art was applied. Subsequently, Menkes had the slabs removed, preserved and professionally restored in anticipation of finding a new home for the piece in the public realm.

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