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Art Deco


Also known as “Zigzag,” Art Deco takes its name from the Arts Decoratifs Exhibition that took place in Paris in 1924-25. It also applies to the “jazz age” style of interiors, furniture, jewelry and industrial design. This style emerged after the end of the First World War and was a self-conscious break from the past. Ornamental or decorative elements were either stripped of historical references, or historical references were highly stylized and transformed. It exhibits angular geometric forms, diagonal patterns, and multicolour primitive motifs applied to planar boxlike massing. Wall surfaces include brick, cast stone, terra cotta and smooth stucco. Accent materials include sculptural terra cotta, dressed stone, modern metal alloys, glass block and stainless steel. In grand expressions of the style, figurative planar images, bas relief and even sculptural works are executed in tile, terra cotta and other materials. Floors are often decorative stone, tile and terrazzo. In Ontario, the Art Deco style was once popular for cinemas, high density residential blocks, commercial storefronts, and offices, but very rarely found in the architecture of places of worship in the province.

Taken from:

The Ontario Heritage Trust. “Architectural Style.” Ontario Heritage Trust, 27 Mar. 2017,


To learn more about Art Deco:

Blumenson, John. Ontario Architecture: A Guide to Styles and Building 1784 to the Present. Markham, Ont.: Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 1990.

Patricia Kemp Community Centre (former school)
(1931) 7894 Dufferin St

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