905 art installation to inspire city building
As you may have heard, the City of Vaughan is attempting to do something relatively novel in urban design circles: engineer a downtown core from scratch in a sprawling metropolitan area.
There are currently multiple condo towers going up and a TTC subway station with Highway 7 rapid transit connections targeting an end of 2017 launch as part of the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension project.
The downtown area in question is called the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre ( VMC). It is a 179-hectare site located near where Highway 7 crosses with Highway 400. One of the initiatives the city is currently undertaking to publicize the multi-purpose urban environment is an ongoing art exhibit at Vaughan city hall called Inspired Cities.
The intention is to steer thinking about the VMC away from just being a planner’s concept and put people in mind of a vital, energetic urban community on the ascent. They want people to start thinking artistically about how to build an engaging visual space.
“The Inspired Cities exhibit was really designed to show the catalytic role that art can play in placemaking and city building,” said Sharon Gaum-Kuchar, the exhibit’s curator.
VMC commissioned 19 works from over 150 submissions that best explore the urban environment in two-dimensional media.
Gaum-Kuchar said that most of the works opted to steer away from realism.
“It was very broad and diverse interpretation. Most of it was quite abstract. It was a very symbolic vocabulary,” she said.
Many of the paintings use dynamic colours to show off the vibrancy of urban living, but there are also photo-realistic interpretations of architecture as well.
Of the 19 works on display, 12 of them are from GTA artists and six come from painters based in the 905.
You can see the work until April 18 at Atrium Gallery in Vaughan city hall, and while there, submit your vote for the People’s Choice Award. It will be announced at the end of the exhibit’s run.
L–R: Rina Gottesman’s ‘City Speak’; Lori Comerford’s ‘Invisible City’; Suzanne Metz’s ‘Cityscape’