Public Art Revitalizes Neighbourhood

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A $12,000 grant from Innovations helped the Prince Rupert Community Arts Council to establish the Fraser Street Art Project, which used public art to revitalize the Fraser Street neighbourhood. The art work, which graces the back wall of the town’s Overwaitea Foods, depicts the rich diversity of North Coast history, replete with symbolism, hidden meaning, and generations of knowledge.

Development of the mural was a community process, with residents having input on the design, along with work created by youth artist apprentices and principle artists, Mitchell Soulfeather and Russell Mather. Approximately 60 local residents took part in the design process, including local Aboriginal Elders, people from various cultural backgrounds, and those who have lived and worked in the Fraser Street neighbourhood. Input was derived from two open houses, three public meetings, and several one-on-one interviews. The mural was officially unveiled in July 2008.

Recognizing the complexity of the mural, the Prince Rupert Community Arts Council is developing an interpretive brochure to complement the increase in pedestrian traffic and tour buses to the site.

Innovations invests in arts, cultural and heritage organizations wishing to create new opportunities for community members to participate in arts and cultural activities. The program is supported by the Province of British Columbia.