A street mural at a new plaza going up on the corner of Gonzales Avenue and Richmond Road aims to reconnect history and place.
Designed by Indigenous artists Jesse Campbell (Metis, Saulteaux) and Brianna Bear (Songhees), the mural is part of the Curbside Colour project, a collaboration between the City of Victoria and Greater Victoria Placemaking Network.
The work “represents the land, waterway systems and the environment that we live, work and play in on the Lekwungen-speaking territories of the Songhees and Esquimalt nations,” said Bear in a statement.
The demonstration project adds meaningful designs to two traffic calming locations, project lead Lorne Daniel explained.
“By painting asphalt surfaces inside the posts where the City of Victoria has delivered traffic calming interventions, we will create joyful places for residents and visitors to pause and linger. The intention for Curbside Colour is to deepen our sense of place, stimulating conversation and connection,” Daniel said.
Painting started in earnest the last week of April and continues this week. Once the first mural is done, artists and volunteers shift to the second mural site at the corner of Vancouver and Burdett. The two street murals showcase traditional plants and animals on the ancestral territories of the WSANEC, Esquimalt and Songhees nations and Lekwungen-speaking peoples.
The locations were chosen to exemplify how the redesign of street rights-of-way can be both attractive and interesting. The new plaza at Gonzales and Richmond is also slated for a new crosswalk as part of the city’s greenway network.
The project is funded through Victoria’s 2021 neighbourhood spaces participatory budgeting initiative.
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