“What in the world is that?” I said to my friend Wendy as we walked off the Esplanade Riel on the Provencher Bridge. A sign nearby told us we were looking at an art piece called Big Red. It is a part of the Cool Gardens series of artworks found around the city. This one was made by a Saskatchewan design collaborative and artist Mark Bauche.
The cool cross is placed near the intersection of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers and creates an X to mark a spot where people can come together. First Nations People came together for centuries where the Red and Assiniboine Rivers meet to trade and socialize with each other.
Because the X is made of red sandbags it is also a reminder of how people have come together frequently in the past to make sandbag barricades during the flooding of Manitoba’s rivers. A cool cross indeed.