The Vancouver Mural Festival commemorated its 5th Year of bringing art to the buildings of Vancouver. In three weeks, from August 18 to September 7, artists from around the world came together to create over sixty murals in nine neighbourhoods.
Vancouver Mural Festival 2020 embraced the power of art to give hope. During a time of global uncertainty, the 2020 Mural Artists proved that creativity brings us together as a community even when social distancing protocols have placed constraints on large gatherings. While the annual Street Party was cancelled, there was an unmistakable current of excitement as 60 new murals came into being.
The 2020 Festival has ended, but the murals remain, their bright colours and symbols reaching out to all passersby. They join the illustrious “murals alumni” of past Festivals.
As I walked by the Murals in progress, I happened upon a 2019 Mural by SatOne, the artistic name of Rafael Gerlach. Even though a year has passed, the mural retains a vibrancy that defied the natural elements of sun, wind, and rain. It is as if the mural was painted only a few days before.
Vancouver Mural Festival’s vision is “to build a society which deeply values and prioritizes art and culture.” They accomplish this by creating “meaningful experiences that build connections between art and people.”
Art prompts a discussion, challenges us to view life through another person’s lens, and binds us to the overarching narrative of humanity. Art influences our fundamental sense of self and encourages us to look at our place within community.
Henry Spencer Moore, best known for his semi-abstract monumental bronze sculptures which are located around the world as public works of art, said it best: “To be an artist is to believe in life.”
“Vancouver Mural Festival is organized by Create Vancouver Society, a Registered Non-Profit dedicated to artistic and cultural development in the Lower Mainland. Through the creation of permanent large-scale public murals, we provide a platform for Vancouver’s diverse art scene to contribute to the city’s cultural legacy for years to come. Our annual festival takes place for a week in August in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood, and we work throughout the year with neighbourhoods around the Lower Mainland to highlight the local culture and vibrance of their area.” Vancouver Mural Festival