One of my favourite events in Vancouver happened a few weeks ago – the Vancouver Mural Festival. It’s an annual celebration of art, music and community featuring neighbourhood mural tours, live painting, live music and an all-around great time. The City of Vancouver has a strong tradition of supporting public murals; artists and building owners are encouraged to collaborate on projects that can bring a community together around urban neighbourhood beautification.
In addition to beautifying urban neighbourhoods, murals have been shown to reduce crime in areas where they are painted as well as increase community ownership towards crime prevention, particularly where the community has been involved in the creation of the mural.
Petro-Canada is piloting a mural project at one of our stations in downtown Toronto. We commissioned graffiti artist, Jessey Pacho (aka Phade), to design and paint the mural.
Before Jessey took to the wall he visited the Regent Park Community Centre where he met youth from the Jimmie Simpson and John Innes Community Centres. He spent the afternoon with local budding artists teaching them about responsible street art and giving them some style tips. And a few of the youth joined Jessey on site to help with the first day of mural painting.
Over the last week, Jessey completed this new piece of art. Doesn’t it look awesome?! Jessey shared his inspiration for the piece:
The mural design is a celebration of diversity. Born from the idea that there was one specific time, during the recent playoffs, that everyone in the city - regardless of nation, creed, political views or background - was united and connected.
We’re very proud of this collaboration between Jessey, the City of Toronto and our Petro-Canada team. Being an active participant in the communities in which we operate is important and projects like this mural embody our commitment to creating a safe and dependable space in the community.