January 1, 2017 kicked off Canada’s Sesquicentennial celebrations. Milestones are important markers of distance and change – how far we’ve come, how the landscape has changed, or not. Elapsed time enables us to see macro patterns, tectonic shifts that may have been so gradual that we only recognize their impact from afar. Or so swift that it’s hard to comprehend their scale.
Fifty years ago, Canada was in the grip of a powerful exploration of its own “ikon-scape.” Our maple leaf flag was only 2 years old. Internationally renowned designers like Alan Fleming, Paul Arthur, Stuart Ash and Jim Donahue were part of a coterie of change agents who were redefining the country’s image.
2017 also marks a milestone for us as well – the 40th anniversary of Trajectory and its predecessor incarnations. The legal entities (Fifty Fingers, Spencer Francey Peters etc.) have changed but the core partnership that was formalized in 1977 remains. It was the same year that Elvis died (he did die, didn’t he?), the Toronto Blue Jays played their debut home game (April 7), the Star Wars franchise stormed the silver screen and the vanguard of “computing for the rest of us,” Apple II, hit the streets.
By temperament, training and obsession, we are chroniclers, creating stories and mementos of times and places. Inevitably, over four decades, there’s a lot of “stuff” that’s accrued. What’s interesting is not so much the actual tidbits of what was, but how they act as markers of the times and journeys “we” – as a society, an economy and a nation – have traveled. They remind us of how our choices – good or bad – define tomorrow’s trajectory and the vector of our opportunity.
Looking ahead, Ikonicast will be channeling some intriguing foresight with interviews from insiders with their ear to the groundswell of change in diverse sectors. And we’ll poke through the archives for a few cultural curios that foreshadow some interesting times ahead. Trajectories are paths or orbits taken in space under the influence of forces such as gravity or, in this case, time.As T.S. Eliot put it so eloquently, “We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.”