Art on the Move - from Etobicoke across the City
A glorious June 14 offered perfect weather for Arts Etobicoke and Lakeshore Art's launch of five Art on the Move vehicles. This third year the event took place at the Assembly Hall off Lake Shore Boulevard in Colonel Samuel Smith Park.
One of the vehicles belongs to Toronto Public Library. The Cube van was decorated by the Youth Advisory Group (YAG) at Mimico Centennial Branch. The youth worked with professional artist Amir Akbari. The left side of the delivery van, shows the actual faces of three of the youth who worked on the project.
Amir helped merge two original themes generated by the group into one: "The Power of the Imagination".
The right side of the van displays some of the many things that might be imagined based on materials available from Toronto Public Library. The delivery cube van will be moving around Toronto displaying the art.
Amir Akbari (artist), Jennifer Kundakci (Youth Advisory Group leader and librarian at Mimico Centennial Library), Jackie Howard (librarian at Mimico Centennial Library) and two sisters from the Youth Advisory Group.
This year's other participants were: - Artist Denise St. Marie and adults with intellectual disabilities from Etobicoke’s Creative Village Studio who decorateda 30ft maintenance van from Community Living Toronto (see left);
- Artist Erica Brisson worked with seniors from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) to transform a large passenger bus that transports CAMH clients;
- Artist Sandra Tarantino led a team of youth from Stonegate Community Health Centre to adorn an AutoShare car-sharing Nissan Cube;
- Artist Amanda Strong mentored youth from Second Base Youth Shelter in Scarborough to create artwork for the Boys and Girls Club of East Scarborough.
Laurel Broten, MPP Etobicoke Lakeshore, Minister of Children and Youth services and Minister Responsible for Women's Issues and Donna Cansfield, MPP Etobicoke Centre, Parilamentary Secretary to the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing; Selwyn Henry representing the Ontario Trillium Foundation and Nadira Pattison, Manager of Arts Services, City of Toronto all spoke as well, and lots of press and media folk recorded the proceedings.
Although this is the last year there is funding for the project from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the hope remains that someone will come forward with funds for the project to continue.
Everyone agrees it is a wonderful way to employ artists, engage community groups and enrich our city with vehicles decorated in lively themes and colours.