safety orange swimmers toronto

Mysterious orange figures spotted floating next to Toronto's waterfront

If you've noticed some mysterious-looking orange figures floating in Lake Ontario near Harbour Square Park, the good news is you're not hallucinating. 

They're actually part of an art installation that aims to shine a light on the global refugee crisis. The artwork is called Safety Orange Swimmers (SOS) and it includes 25 orange figures clinging to life preservers. 

Each figure represents one million of the approximately 26 million refugees worldwide. 

The artists, Ann Hirsch and Jeremy Angier, created the installation in 2016 and originally set it up in Fort Point Channel, Boston. SOS is only one of their many out-of-the-box art installations.

Three figures have been added since the installation's original debut to represent the increase in the number of refugees in the world today. 

"SOS Safety Orange Swimmers is a piece that looks at the global refugee crisis and it really is inspired by the idea of making connections between different parts of the city, and the city and the water," Hirsch said in a video. 

The installation will be floating in Toronto until Sept. 17, 2019.

Lead photo by

The Waterfront BIA


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