Saturday, 4 June 2016

Public Art in Urban Nature

My recent intersection with urban interventionism through 100In1Day has led to another intersection, one that involves walking in my city's vast river valley and ravine complex.

Knowing what I have been up to lately, my husband clued me into the Kinnaird Ravine art walk, and I went along with him with our son and dog to check it out. The KinnArt Ravine project was mounted in early November 2015. Since then, people who walk along one portion of the gravel path through the ravine also pass through a public art gallery. News coverage at the time gives good information on the project and many more photos.

This part of the ravine is so deep and low that it is easy to forget the ravine is in the city's downtown. At first I mourned the now more obvious signs of human activity that the murals present. Of course, my desire for nature to somehow trump human occupation is based on willful illusion: I am well aware that I am in a city when I walk through the ravine. In any event, the paintings replace an existing retaining wall along the trail, so the murals beautify an existing architectural structure.

This project is listed on the website of Make Something Edmonton, the same group that is coordinating 100in1 Day.

News coverage at the time emphasized the community league's desire to discourage the graffitti that covered the previous retaining wall. As one of the organizers pointed out, however, public art is not alien in other parts of the world, such as his home town in Chile.

I sometimes get suspicious about attempts to discourage graffitti, even though I realize that much graffitti is not art. I was pleased, then, to see some graffitti-style murals in KinnArt.

Signs of creativity and positive group effort please me and give fodder for my humble blog too. I salute the artists and organizers of this project.

No comments:

Post a Comment