OCAD University's "Steam Canoe," one of last year's Winter Stations (Photo: Khristel Stecher)

Eight winning teams – five international and local artists, designers, architects and landscape architects, and three university teams – have been selected to create temporary artworks that will transform Toronto's east end beaches into "a winter spectacle."

This year's competition is the third iteration of the Winter Stations Design Competition, which was conceived by RAW Design, Ferris + Associates and Curio as "as a way of using design to inspire Torontonians to visit the beach in the winter." The competition asks entrants to transform ordinary lifeguard stands – otherwise empty in the winter months – into "playful art installations."

The 2016 winners included, among others, OCAD University's Steam Canoe. Like last year, the 2017 competition included teams from three schools: University of Waterloo, University of Toronto and Humber College School of Media Studies & IT, School of Applied Technology.

The eight installations will be built along Kew, Scarborough and Balmy beaches, will debut on 20 February 2017, and will stay open to the public until 27 March 2017.

5 Winners

"I See You Ashiyu" by Asuka Kono and Rachel Salmela (Toronto, Canada)

I See You Ashiyu by Asuka Kono and Rachel Salmela (Toronto, Canada)
"This installation uses the idea the Japanese hot spring  and warm water to provide physical relief from the cold. By creating a landscape-based gathering space on the beach, this installation emphasizes the contrast in the seasons and recalls memories of a summer beach."

"North" by studio PERCH (Montreal, Canada)

North by studio PERCH (Montreal, Canada)
"Using the poetic concept of the great 'North,' this installation conjures a powerful and eternal image that transports visitors to an imagined forest. The work suspends 41 fir trees in midair creating an evocative and colour-saturated canopy that stands out against the white of winter."

"Collective Memory" by Mario García (Barcelona, Spain) and Andrea Govi (Milan, Italy)

Collective Memory by Mario García (Barcelona, Spain) and Andrea Govi (Milan, Italy)
"Inspired by the statistic that by 2031 nearly one-half of the Canadian population over the age of 15 will be foreign-born or the child of a migrant parent Collective Memory aims to be the catalyst of present and shared anecdotes. Constructed out of recycled bottles – the archetype for the lost message – two translucent walls will shield the existing lifeguard structure, creating a threshold between shore and city."

"BuoyBuoyBuoy" by Dionisios Vriniotis, Rob Shostak, Dakota Wares-Tani, and Julie Forand (Toronto, Canada)

BuoyBuoyBuoy by Dionisios Vriniotis, Rob Shostak, Dakota Wares-Tani, Julie Forand (Toronto, Canada)
"Capturing the impression of a series of buoys moving in the waves, BuoyBuoyBuoy uses many small parts to create a whole. Each component is the silhouette of a buoy from afar creating a fog or a cloud around the lifeguard station like drops reflecting and refracting the light."

"The Beacon" by Joao Araujo Sousa and Joanna Correia Silva (Porto, Portugal)

The Beacon by Joao Araujo Sousa and Joanna Correia Silva (Porto, Portugal)
"The concept translates into the archetypical lighthouse conical shape, reduced to its simplest expression and conformed to the lifeguard stand proportions and wrapped in aged wood. The Beacon will act as a temporary drop-off location for non-perishable items such as canned food or clothes. "

3 Institutional Winners

"Flotsam and Jetsam" by University of Waterloo (Ontario)

Flotsam and Jetsam by University of Waterloo, Ontario
Project team: Nicola Augustin, NegarBehzad Jazi, Anne Cheung, Bryce Clayton, Catherine Cohen, Mona Dai, Sarah Donaldson, Parshan Fatehi,  Allegra Friesen, Golnaz Jamshidi, Carly Kandrack, Ryan Pagliaro, Elida Pletikapic, Alexandra Sermol, Kirsten Sheppard-Neuhofer, Eric Sviratchev, Joel Tremblay and Danny Wei.
"As visitors approach from the vantage of the city the 20-foot high sculpture generates curiosity and invites a closer look. The installation reveals the realities of plastic consumption, resulting waste and its effects on the aquatic biodiversity of the planet we share."

"Aurora" by Humber College School of Media Studies & IT, School of Applied Technology (Toronto, Ontario)

Aurora by Humber College School of Media Studies & IT, School of Applied Technology (Toronto, Ontario)
Creative Team: Jenessa Atkinson, Aaron Bavle, Jason Carreiro, Gabriela Merka-Derez, Kimberly Michelle Czornodolskyj, Karun Ramani, Trish Roque, Roxanne Van Dam, Qiao Wang
Faculty Advisors: Marcin Kedzior, Professor, School of Applied Technology
"From afar, the structure is incognito, reflecting the surrounding environment and fading into it. Entering the space, the explorer views misconstrued, mirroring illustrations of themselves and their surroundings."

"Midwinter Fire" by Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto (Ontario)

Midwinter Fire by Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto (Ontario)

Creative Team: John Beeton, Herman Borrego, Anna Chen, Vikrant Dasoar, Michael DeGirolamo, Leonard Flot, Monika Gorgopa, James Kokotilo, Asuka Kono, Karima Peermohammad, Rachel Salmela, Christina Wilkinson, Julie Wong, Rotem Yaniv
Faculty Advisor: Pete North, Assistant Professor
"Midwinter Fire provides visitors with the opportunity to engage with an augmented winter forest creating an immersive experience that reframes Southern Ontario’s vegetation in contrast with the exposed winter landscape of the beach. This installation uses the simple idea of reflectivity to expand the illusion of an urban forest and to make the project disappear into the surrounding landscape."