The Town’s Public Art Program is administered by the Parks Recreation and Culture department and aims to enrich the lives of Collingwood residents and visitors by enhancing public spaces, fostering cultural identity and pride, promoting creativity, and encouraging dialogue among citizens.
Over 30 applications were received for this mural commission at 28 Huron Street. After careful consideration, the Public Art Committee selected 4 artists to submit a proposal including a design concept and story behind the artwork. Following the guidelines of the The Town’s Public Art Policy and Procedures, the Committee will make their final decision in the next few weeks. We’d like to share the four designs, which are currently under consideration by the Committee. It will be a difficult decision! Here are the artist’s designs and their stories.
My proposed site-specific, outdoor mural artwork entitled ‘ESOTIQUÉ’ merges meticulously hand-drawn and painted elements with 3D rendered components. The base foundation of the artwork uses numerous black ink drawings, acrylics, and watercolour paintings that are composited (assembled together) digitally. ‘Esotiqué’ is a living, breathing art installation that features an embedded augmented reality (AR) component within the artwork. The AR component will allow the viewer to scan a QR code with their Smartphone in order to view the animated AR overlay in real-time. When the viewer scans their Smartphone over the mural the artwork will transform before their eyes as the AR animation converts the mural artwork from a summer scene to a winter scene displaying falling snow, blowing trees, and a transition from warm hues to frosty colour tones.
The mural artwork pays tribute to Collingwood’s beautiful landscape and its vibrant outdoor recreation culture while simultaneously pointing to Collingwood’s bright future. The foreground of the artwork is created from dynamic line work reminiscent of mechanical engineering and architecture on a painterly landscape inspired by Collingwood’s breathtaking topography and the Georgian Bay.
This interactive mural design titled “Find it in Collingwood” promotes a growing, thriving Collingwood while increasing awareness of the town’s features and encouraging preservation of nature. It is engaging and educational, with broad appeal to residents and visitors of all ages, inviting exploration around downtown and beyond.
From a distance, the escarpment descends from the left with colours and landforms representing Georgian Bay and green spaces. Evergreen tree shapes “grow” from left to right, envisioning the growth of the town.
A Seek and Find game at pedestrian level encourages engagement with the mural’s imagery while educating the public on many of Collingwood’s landmarks. The list of items to find and the small images within the mural would be clearly outlined in black, easily seen and read from across the street yet hidden within the larger landscape.
Other unique features within the design:
- Some images are split, or transition from one thing into another, such as the winter snowboarder/ summer wake boarder at upper left
- Windows, vents and other protrusions from the building are considered in the design, with creative shaped edges and cut-outs
- Layered images: Many Collingwood landmarks and amenities (in addition to those in the seek and find list) are illustrated within larger outlines
For this project, entitled "Growing Forward", I plan to create a mural that focuses primarily on infusing our urban surroundings with a sense of the natural world. My design features a woman surrounded by flowers as the focal point, with a small chickadee perched above her and a butterfly to her left. This image sits atop a colourful and vibrant background of expressive abstract designs. Amidst the background there is a subtle silhouette of the Collingwood shoreline, featuring the iconic terminals.
The theme of connection to nature is important and relevant, not only in a general sense, but within the context of the area. With so many green spaces, trails, hills and the shoreline nearby, I feel that embracing nature is a quality that most people in Collingwood would identify with. The synergy between the figure, the flowers and wildlife, and the vibrant colours serves as a metaphorical representation of this community spirit. The metaphor of growth is also strongly present in this design. The flowers and bloom in the design can be seen as a symbolic display of prosperity, hop and a positive outlook for the future. The incorporation of bright, vibrant colours is essential, so as to be engaging for the large number of pedestrians who pass by the wall daily.
This mural is meant to be the visualization of a feeling. This feeling is, in my opinion, responsible for the unique, vibrant and flourishing creative energy of the Town of Collingwood. It is a continuous turning circle of creators, growers, artisans and their loyal supporters and purveyors. This constant support creates a sense of safety and security which allows people to explore their unique and individual passions and truths. This creative freedom fosters diversity and from this a unique and vibrant community blooms. I chose to use symbolic elements in my mural to represent the people and values that make Collingwood so special. In the bottom right corner violets represent loyalty, the purple columbine represents focused intention and a sense of purpose, moving upward the towering acanthus flower represents fine art and artifice, and growing outwards from there with vitality, the oak leaves represent strength. The hand, which is reaching out to connect with the oak leaf is representative of the community of Collingwood itself, the humanity of each and every person who contributes to the unique vibrant supportive and creative energy that allows Collingwood to bloom into the place that it is today. I hope the message of this mural will ring loud and true to the people of Collingwood and inspire creativity, and encourage support in the community for many years to come.
The Town of Collingwood offers a free art hanging space in Council Chambers to display local artist’s original work. The program strives to reflect the area’s diverse arts practices and encourage a link between visual artists and the community. Collective or joint submissions from a minimum of 2 artists are preferred. There is no participation or commission fee. Artwork must be suitable for a community space that includes a 50’ hanging rail and 12’ ceilings designed for two-dimensional artwork installed using the existing suspended cables and hooks.
- TBD with Town and Artist
Submission Requirements – Deadline: Applications are accepted at anytime.
- Completed application form (available by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Brief bio of each artist participating
- Three (3) images of each artist’s work (representative of recent work) with title, medium and size
All proposals will be reviewed. Preference will be given to Collingwood artists (residents, tenants, property owners).
Questions? Contact Coordinator, Arts & Culture email@example.com or 705.444.2500 ext. 3287
Deadline: Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.
Terms of Entry
- Artwork must be suitable for exhibition in Council Chambers, a community space. The amount of work will be appropriate and of the same quality and theme as described in the application.
- Artwork must be ready to hang upon arrival utilizing the existing system. Artists are responsible for hanging and removing their own work with the assistance of Town staff.
- The Town of Collingwood reserves the right to remove any work at anytime and agrees to contact the Artist upon removal.
- There is no participation fee or commission for work sold. The Town of Collingwood will not be responsible for artwork sales. Artwork sold may be replaced by a work of similar quality and theme.
- Title cards will not be attached to the walls. Artists must provide a bio, statement about the exhibition, photograph (if available) and list of artwork with contact information for display.
- Insurance will be provided by the Town. Two weeks prior to installation, artists must submit a list that includes title, date, dimensions, description and value of each artwork.
- Artists may host a reception in Council Chambers (weekday during regular business hours), on a date and time mutually agreeable to the artists and the Town of Collingwood. Alcohol is not permitted. Artists are responsible for all aspects of the reception including coordinating, promoting and providing for the reception. All clean-up and replacement of room arrangement is also the responsibility of the artists.
- The Town will promote the exhibition on the Town’s website.
- In the event that this program is unable to accommodate a proposed exhibit, applications may be forwarded to the Library for consideration. Information about the gallery at the Library is available at www.collingwoodpubliclibrary.ca