Mayor Gregor Robertson will support City staff recommendations that will give a significant boost to Vancouver’s Public Art program. Staff are asking Council to approve $1.5 million to be spent through 2018, $755,000 of which will be spent on projects enabled or installed by this summer. One of the signature projects the City will support is the first-ever Vancouver Mural Festival, the city’s largest not for profit celebration of street art, with a $200,000 grant that will see over 30 murals created in Mount Pleasant this summer.
“There couldn’t be a better time than Vancouver’s Public Art Program’s 25th year to give our talented local artists a boost,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Vancouver boasts more artists per capita than anywhere in Canada and our creative economy is thriving. I’m looking forward to this significant investment adding dynamic and unique pieces to the City’s public art collection that celebrate our diversity, vibrancy and creativity!”
The remaining funding for public art ‘Quick Starts’ for summer projects will be allocated to:
- $45,000 for artist lighting projects in Jim Deva Plaza;
- $10,000 to an Imagination Zone Partnership with City Studio to encourage experiments in creating a healthy and creative city in public spaces, with an additional $100,000 to support a curator, artist fees and costs for art fabrication and installations in 2017;
- $100,000 to integrate Musqueam culture, art and design into public spaces in South Vancouver; and
- Expanding community art grants to $195,000 annually, an increase of $300,000 over two years.
Staff are also asking Council to approve $745,000 for partnership public art projects for 2017/18 that will be identified in a report back to Council by the end of the summer.
Vancouver’s public art program has to date resulted in over 400 pieces of public art and community art installations throughout the City. In addition, private sector rezonings greater than 100,000 square feet are required to contribute $1.98 per buildable square foot to a public art process approved by the City.