Reclaimed heritage siding panel with image of Queen and text (CA)NADA

Artist: Sheryl Boyle


This piece of tin farmhouse roofing was reclaimed from a ditch in Westmeath, Ontario. The interior side of the roofing is stamped with a figure of the Queen of England and the text NADA stamped in blue ink — a reminder of the depth of the colonial attitude in the early 1900s. While manufactured materials are not often associated with politics, they can nevertheless have overt or underlying political and social connotations. As the Azrieli School of Architecture &Urbanism moves towards decolonizing the curriculum, it is important to consider materiality’s place within that effort. In creating this tile, Associate Professor Sheryl Boyle attempted to decolonize the material to continue its life without continuing its previous historical connotations. She removed the CA from the word CANADA, leaving the word NADA, a word with no meaning, beside the Queen’s image.