The City of Toronto announced today that street artists Kirsten McCrae and Jason Pinney have been awarded commissions to create artwork on the underpass on Gerrard Street East at Carlaw Avenue, and on Jones Avenue between Gerrard Street East and Boultbee Avenue.
“I am looking forward to watching artwork from Kirsten and Jason come to life at these sites. These are the first two – of nine – that will bring together the rail line that runs through Toronto’s east end,” said Councillor Paula Fletcher (Ward 30 Toronto-Danforth).
East End Bridges to Art is an integrated street art vision for a series of murals on rail bridges in the Carlaw-Dundas area. These murals by Kirsten McCrae and Jason Pinney will be the first two murals in the series. They will begin painting this summer, with an official unveiling event later this fall. As part of the program, both artists will invite and mentor other emerging artists from the local Toronto community.
“I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to bring my creative mark to the incredible neighbourhood of Riverdale,” said McCrae. “I can’t wait to meet its many wonderful residents while I paint! I have been, and will continue to be, inspired by this interesting and diverse community.”
“This artwork will recognize the strength of diversity and the importance of inclusion within the neighbourhood in which I’ve become most familiar over the past decade,” said Pinney. “The cross-section of workshop participants, within the mural creation process, will allow the artwork to express the local experience of generations and authentically reveal the landmarks that are most significant to the community.”
About East End Bridges to Art
There are a total of nine bridges along the rail corridor that stretches from Eastern Avenue to Coxwell Avenue. StreetARToronto (StART), a program of the City of Toronto Transportation Services Division, worked with Bespoke Cultural Collective to gather community input to develop a unifying theme and an integrated approach for mural installations at all nine underpass locations. Several different artist design concepts were considered for the Gerrard and Jones underpasses by a community Advisory Committee who then selected a winning design concept for each underpass.
About StreetARToronto (StART)
StreetARToronto (StART) is an innovative city building initiative specifically designed for streets and public spaces. An integral part of the City’s Graffiti Management Plan, StART has been successful in reducing graffiti vandalism and replacing it with vibrant, colourful, community-engaged street art. StART programs encourage active transportation (walking and cycling), make our streets more beautiful and safe, reduce overall infrastructure maintenance costs, showcase local artists, mentor emerging talent, and create opportunities for positive engagement among residents, business, artists, arts organizations and City staff.
While based on themes relevant to local neighbourhoods, StART art works and artists also reflect the City of Toronto motto Diversity our Strength and foster a greater sense of belonging among all. StART is an initiative of City of Toronto, Transportation Services Division, Public Realm Section. Follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/StART_Toronto , on Instagram at http://www.instagram.com/start_streetartoronto, or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/StreetARToronto.