COMPASS is a site-specific, outdoor art installation of 3800 hand-made, ceramic sculptures designed to celebrate the opening of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society headquarters. It is made up of four sculptural shapes - feathers, roses, fleurs-de-lys and birds - arranged in the shape of the compass rose logo of the RCGS. Each sculpture is unique, authentic and original but together they tell a larger story.
COMPASS tells the story of the three main groups of people here at the time of Confederation, Canada today and Canada projected into the future. The feathers, roses and fleurs de lys are sculptures that were part of a special project for Canada's sesquicentennial in 2017 called Populace, where 9000 of these exact pieces were installed at the Canadian Museum of Nature. Now, Populace has been re-imagined as Compass, which tells the story of the Indigenous peoples (feathers), the British peoples (roses) and the French peoples (fleurs-de-lys). 195 ceramic birds have been added, one for every country in the world today. The installation, which is oriented due north, is designed in all white to highlight the meaning behind the project: peace in all directions. The feather sculptures are the most numerous and are at the centre of the project, respecting the first peoples to Canada and the land upon which the installation stands. At night, a 4-directional light display eminates from the installation's centre and shines upward as a beacon of hope. A bright Canadian future that sends a message of peace in all directions.