due to covid 19

Someone is documenting signs from Toronto and around the world of places closed due to COVID-19

Life in Toronto as we once knew it has abruptly shifted in the last few weeks, and that shift becomes even more apparent when you see all the places that have been affected "due to COVID-19" pieced together in one place.

The Due to COVID-19 Instagram account started to do just that last month by compiling images of all the signs and posters across the city that are the result of the pandemic.

"During the coronavirus pandemic, daily life has come to a sudden standstill and businesses have had to respond," reads the website.

"Signs on storefronts announce operational changes but these messages are also brimming over with solidarity, shared responsibility, and cautious optimism."

"This project attempts to document the temporary signs that have gone up across our communities."

The project was started by Andrew Louis, a local software developer.

"I've been attempting to photograph and document all the COVID-19 store signs that have gone up everywhere as a result of the coronavirus pandemic," reads his website.

"While walking around my neighbourhood, I was struck by the range of emotions in the signs that suddenly plastered every storefront and by their messages of hope, optimism, and solidarity," he said about the project.

Louis' project has begun to gain attention, with contributions from people across Canada and around the world. Presently it includes 38 cities in 8 countries.

The signs are a reminder of just how much the pandemic has changed the local landscape of Toronto as it continues to alter daily life.

Although the vast majority imply some sort of closure, others are advertisements for online services, notices of operational changes, instructions, quotes and heartfelt messages.

Anyone is welcome to submit images and credit is provided on the site. It also has a map feature for anyone wishing to go check signs out for themselves.

Lead photo by

Fareen Karim


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