For the past 11 years, Lindsay Zier-Vogel has been wooing Torontonians through a series of love letters tucked away in airmail envelops and marked ‘Love’ for strangers and passersby to stumble upon.
“I was with my friend at Trinity Bellwoods Park, writing love poems to the city. We happened to have envelopes and we decided to hide them,” said Zier-Vogel, an artist raised in Etobicoke who now lives in Bloor West Village.
Phone booths, newspaper stands and bicycles are just some of the places the love letters to Toronto can be found.
Zier-Vogel’s love lettering has swelled into a community engagement project that has stretched across the city and beyond. Since 2004, thousands of letters have been written by residents confessing their affection for the city.
The project hit the road in 2014 to celebrate its 10th anniversary in collaboration with DreamCatcher Mentoring for a three-city journey through Canada’s northern cities of Yellowknife, Whitehorse and Fort Smith.
Most recently, the project connected with the Chester Subway Station Artist Stand to encourage people to appreciate the city.
“I love when art intersects in your day and you can’t help but pause,” she said.
During a love lettering event, Zier-Vogel recalls a three-year-old boy who wrote a letter to marigolds.
It took a moment for Zier-Vogel to realize from the boy’s height and line of sight marigolds had a larger presence in the life of a child than it would for an adult.
“It shows different perspectives of the city. It makes me see it differently,” Zier-Vogel said.
The Love Lettering Project will be partnering with the David Suzuki Foundation this fall as an extension of the Homegrown National Park Crawl event Sept. 27 at Trinity Bellwoods Park.
Lately, it is the Humber River and High Park that have been receiving heart-felt letters from Zier-Vogel, who has recently become a mother and has been spending much of her time walking wither her six-month-old in the west end.
The ultimate power of the Love Lettering Project is its abiltity to bring people together, she said.
“Love lettering forms a connection with people you will never meet and that’s really special in a city as big as Toronto.”
Check out http://loveletteringproject.com to learn more.