VANIER TRAFFIC SIGNAL BOX ART GALLERY
The Building Better Revitalized Neighbourhoods (BBRN) program at the City of Ottawa has a goal of improving the health, vibrancy and liveability of priority neighbourhoods within our city. In autumn 2020 the program funded a community-engaged project that created an open-air “art gallery” on the City’s traffic signal boxes along the main streets of Vanier. The gallery features six artworks by local artists that were meant to respond to and represent the incredible diversity of the Vanier neighbourhood. As a result, this final roster of artworks created in a dazzling array of styles and techniques features rich imagery and symbolism from around the world.
Curator and Project Manager: Kseniya Tsoy
Project Partner: Quartier Vanier BIA
Community Consultation Partner: Vanier Community Association
Installation: Chapter One Studio
Photos: Suzanne Lépine
“Sedna and Seal”
Alexander Angnaluak is a visual artist from Kugluktuk, Nunavut. His works are colourful and whimsical interpretations of Inuit legends featuring beautiful imagery of the Great North.
In 2017 Alexander took first place in the national Indigenous Arts and Stories contest organized by Historica Canada and was honoured at the Governor General's History Awards. Alex is an active community member and works on many projects with Tungasuvvingat Inuit, including mentoring of youth through arts.
Location: McArthur Ave at Olmstead St
"Te extraño mama” (Missing you mommy)
Aguacateco, speaking Mayan from Guatemala, Edgar Hernandez is a prolific artist based in Ottawa, Canada. He works in sculpture, film, media projection, and digital technologies with a focus on the difficult questions of habitat renewal, conservation and restoration.
This busy working artist still finds time to be an active community volunteer. He helps out at the Vanier Museopark Sugar Festival, the Wild Pollinator Partners Network and the Nectar New Edinburgh Community & Arts Centre. He also contributes to community projects in Guatemala and the Dominican Republic.
Location: McArthur Ave at North River Rd
"Esprit libre” (Free Spirit)
Héritier Bilaka is a professional visual artist who works in traditional and digital painting and illustration. Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, he is now based between Ottawa and Pickering, ON.
His artistic work is a questioning of the true identity of the human being as well as our role as part of nature. His beautiful realist paintings are a dynamic mix of different elements taken from the flora and fauna combined with either humans, animals or masks. Women are also a great source of inspiration for him and the question of gender speaks to him a lot.
Location: McArthur Ave at Lafontaine Ave
"Power bird at New Moon”
Mark Seabrook is an Anishnaabe multidisciplinary artist from Manitoulin Island. He is also a “Cultural Grandfather” and Knowledge Keeper with Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health.
As a visual artist, Mark’s visual artworks are greatly inspired by traditional Anishnaabe art forms and the art of Norval Morrisseau. Born to both Bird Clan and Fish Clan, birds and fish feature prominently in many of his paintings. The birds, often ravens, sit silent and bear witness or carry messages to the figures that live within his works.
Location: McArthur Ave at Allen Blvd
"It looks like one of those pieces you see in Cuba, that’s...awesome!’’
Laurena Finéus is a Caribbean-Canadian visual artist with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Ottawa. Her approach involves a gradual layering of paint that emulates texture with an array of rippling and dense landscapes. She explores representations of Haiti and its archives, the third-space and pan-Africanism, and is informed by her black, female identity. Finéus’ lived experiences are centred in each of her pieces in order to create safe spaces that engage her key audience — the Haitian diaspora. Through a reconstruction of the fragmented history of the Caribbean, she aims to demonstrate the complexity of its people.
Location: Vanier Parkway at Meilleur Pvt
Nicole Bélanger is a Franco-Ontarian visual and community-engaged artist who has been creative in painting, sculpture, ceramics and murals.
This work of art is part of a series of large murals created for the Historica Dominion Institute- Terry Fox Center. The series represents the 6 time zones of Canada. Each mural was created using a different approach to represent the incredible pictorial variety of our country. “Ontario – Quebec” captures the natural essence of our province.
Location: Vanier Parkway at Deschamps Ave