Terry Fox, Frank and IanFriday, March 31, 2006
When architect Frank Allen's Terry Fox Memorial, at the foot of Robson and Beatty Street, was inaugurated in 1984, it instantly became Vancouver's most hated structure. Could it be too small to reflect Terry Fox's huge feat? Nearby BC Place Stadium also dwarfs the structure. The monument is now mostly forgotten, even though there are many positive aspects to it. I met and photographed Frank Allen a bit later. He stuck to his guns and stayed in town in spite of the terrible and long media campaign against his memorial. Allen had a tidy little office somewhere on West 14th or 15th Avenue, just West of Granville. In the garden he had one of the fibre glass lions, that was the model for the four that grace each of the memorial's corners. I like to think of them as our city lions There is another lion on the top floor balcony of the Marine Building but that is another story. In the memorial arch walls there are two, 5ft by 18 ft, steel etchings. One is based on the iconic photograph of Terry Fox running and the other is a map of Canada showing his cross country route. I happen to know the artist on whose pontilistic style drawings the etchings are based. He is Ian Bateson. Ian has never believed in participating in fashionable or popular projects that might further his career. He believes in following his heart and his principles. As for the gentle Frank Allen I have no idea where he might be.
I took the memorial photograph here in one shot. I used a Pentax MX with a 15mm rectilinear wide angle lens and Kodak Tri-X. The beautiful Maddalena Di Gregorio placed her hand near my lens and I used a tiny flash. I kept the shutter open for 35 seconds at f-5.6. I processed the film in Perfection Micrograin using the technique called extended range night photography.