Victoria’s Rock Bay neighbourhood has been transformed into an outdoor art gallery for street art and creative expression. In August 2018, 17 local, national and international artists painted 17 murals on the walls of 16 sites as part of the Concrete Canvas Rock Bay Mural Project.
The murals reflect the character, culture and history of the neighbourhood. Each artist painted his or her own mural but may have shared a wall with another artist. The Concrete Canvas murals are designed to encourage dialogue, enhance Rock Bay’s identity, create opportunities for artists, and establish connections between local artists and businesses.
Concrete Canvas Rock Bay Murals Map
Use this helpful map to tour the Concrete Canvas Rock Bay Murals! (Note: One more location to be added soon!)
To download the map click here: Concrete Canvas Map.pdf [PDF - 687 KB]
(Poster and map created by Luke Ramsey.)
Concrete Canvas Artists
Vladimir (Waone) Manzhos - Kiev, Ukraine
Waone made his debut in Kiev in 1999 as a graffiti artist, but already in 2003 he got bored of lettering and went to next level of public art - visual storytelling. He developed his recognizable style with colorful images full of references to science fiction and numerology, cosmology and folklore, myth and magic. In 2005 he and another artist formed the duo Intersni Kazki, and in a span of little more than ten years, the two made large murals in Europe, Russia, India, Mexico and the United States.
When the duo split in 2016, Vladimir began to develop a language based on an elegant and finely detailed linear approach. After the making of Matter: Changing States, a large mural done at Kerala, India, black and white became one of the earmarks of his style, though in parallel he continues to paint with a palette of bright colors.
Ellen Rutt - Detroit, USA
Detroit-based artist Ellen Rutt makes bold, mixed-media paintings, installations, murals and wearables. Through the interaction of shapes, colors, and textures she explores connectivity and dissonance. Her work often has an immerse, performative quality, encouraging the participation of both the artist and audience in the documentation of the piece. Murals act as backdrops, clothing becomes costume, and shape cut outs become prop pieces in an equally playful and dramatic reflection of human life.
She graduated with a BFA from the University of Michigan School of Art & Design and has exhibited work and painted murals in New York, Chicago, Austin and France, among others.
Bracken Hanuse Corlett - Vancouver, BC
Bracken Hanuse Corlett is a multimedia artist hailing from the Wuikinuxv and Klahoose Nations. He got his start in theatre and performance 14 years ago and has since transitioned into a focus on digital-media, live-visual installation/performance and visual arts. He is the co-founder of the Vancouver Indigenous Media Arts Festival and over the last four years he has performed across the country as a member of the audio-visual collective, Skookum Sound System.
He is a graduate of the En’owkin Centre of Indigenous Art and went to Emily Carr University of Art and Design for a B.F.A. in Visual Arts. He has also studied Northwest Coast art, carving and design from acclaimed Heiltsuk artists Bradley Hunt and his sons Shawn Hunt and Dean Hunt. Some of his notable exhibitions, performances and/or screenings have been at Grunt Gallery, Gallery Gachet, Museum of Anthropology, Unit PITT Projects (Vancouver), Three Walls Gallery (Chicago) Minneapolis Institute of Arts (Minnesota), SAW Gallery, Ottawa International Animation Festival (Ottawa), Royal BC Museum, Open Space (Victoria) and the Sâkêwêwak Artists’ Collective, Mackenzie Art Gallery (Regina), Tidal Force – Independent Media Arts Alliance (Halifax), Urban Shaman (Winnipeg), Music Gallery (Toronto).
Jill Stanton - Edmonton, AB
Jill Stanton is a muralist and artist from Edmonton, Alberta. Her work has been featured in the 2017 Vancouver Mural Festival, Toronto's Underpass Park, the 2017 Wall-to-Wall Mural Festival in Winnipeg, the 2015 Alberta Biennial of Contemporary Art, as well as several private and public mural commissions across Canada. She was shortlisted for the 2017 and 2015 Eldon & Anne Foote Visual Arts Prize.
Jill paints murals with a balance between careful planning and site-sensitive improvisation, resulting in pieces that are tailor-made for their environments. She is inspired by a variety of subject matter; many of her murals feature abstract shapes mixed with familiar forms (such as plants and hands) to manipulate the viewer’s feeling of scale. Currently, Jill is experimenting with using murals to guide the viewer’s eye around the composition on the wall to suggest open narratives.
Kenneth Lavallee - Winnipeg, MB
Recent developments in the artistic practice of Kenneth Lavalee reveal a strong interest in shifting a primarily two dimensional practice (painting, drawing, silkscreen) into physical, tangible experiences. Traditional ideas of balance, order, harmony and interconnectedness gathered from both Indigenous and Western learning continue to guide his work as he explore new possibilities with elemental mediums such as steel, wire, rock and wood in responding to spaces and opportunities around him. Be it through sculpture, installation, large scale mural, animation or object design, he aims to create work that successfully incorporates itself to the world at large, bridging together his Metis heritage with modern design sensibilities. Kenneth is of Metis descent, and lives and works in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Treaty 1 territory and birthplace of the Metis nation).
Arly "Five Eight" - Montreal, QC
FIVE EIGHT is a multidisciplinary artist, born and based in Montreal, Quebec. A fine-art painter since 2002, he favours a bold aesthetic over political commentary. His figurative murals and paintings feature dynamic compositions and vivid contrasting colours.
Having produced a series of neon-inspired paintings and murals, in 2014 he was inspired to produce real neon pieces. Under the mentorship of master glassblower, Gerald Collard, FIVE developed and perfected the skill of glass tube bending. He exhibited his first neon works in 2016. While his painting work affects his approach to design with neon, his experience with neon affects his understanding and use of color and light. There is a communication between the two mediums taking place with each consequent work. FIVE has exhibited work in Canada, United States, Estonia, Germany, Ireland and Israel. He is constantly striving to take on larger and more challenging projects. He is currently in the research and planning phase for a series of mixed media sculptural installations.
Calvin Coles is a painter and muralist living in Victoria, BC. His work primarily investigates the behaviours of nature existing and thriving in urban environments, particularly birds and bird families. Originally from London, Ontario, Calvin has studied at the Ontario College of Art before moving west to Victoria. He is a father of two kids, and loves exploring and learning in nature with his family.
"I create art from life, from what I see. In doing so, I hope others to be stirred, emotionally and/or mentally. I begin with a concept, and let the piece take me. The art has its own voice, separate from mine. With realistic tendencies, I make an effort to balance imagination and reality by drawing vague representations of my subjects. I use juxtaposition of light and dark, fullness and emptiness, bold and soft, black and white; my preferred tool has been the pencil since the age of three. I have combined my skills of observation, focus and drawing to create work for books, magazines, beer labels, merchandise and more."
Kerri Flannigan is interdisciplinary artist and support worker currently based in Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ territories who explores methods of experimental narrative and documentary. Primarily working in installation, video and performance, Flannigan’s work comprises an interdisciplinary approach to forms of experimental narrative and documentary. This work frequently takes a collaborative form, working individually and collectively within a large group to create responses. Family mythologies, coming-of-age confessions, body language and swimming pools have all been subjects of recent works. Flannigan’s work continues to center relational experiences of place, and is informed by the teachings of queer/trans methodologies and praxis.
Flannigan gained formative arts-based mentorship through being a foundational member at the community art space, Ste. Emilie Skillshare in Montreal. Ste. Emilie was a DIY art space that was maintained with love for people of colour, queer and trans people. The collective aimed to promote artistic expression in the community and ran a studio for people to learn and share skills and create art in the spirit of revolution and anti-oppression. Flannigan has shown locally and internationally, receiving a Canada Arts Media Grant in 2017, BC Arts Council Project Assistance Grant in 2017, BC Arts Council Professional Development Grant in 2017, and Best English Zine at the Expozine Awards (2011 and 2014) and was runner-up to the inaugural Lind Prize
Caitlin McDonagh is a Canadian visual artist and illustrator who creates intricate illustrative works that are deeply inspired by folklore, storytelling, traditions, architecture as well as various real and un-real sources. She works in a base of acrylagouache paints that lend well to her attention to detail, pattern work, and vibrant colours. Her work is in the City of Burnaby Permanent Art Collection at the Burnaby Art Gallery as well as numerous private collections around the world.
Peter Allen has been painting Graffiti and Street Art in Victoria since 1993. In 1995 he helped start the Wildfire bakery wall and helped Rock Solid foundation start the Trackside Gallery. Peter has a fine art practice that draws from his childhood sailing around the Gulf islands and growing up under Garry Oaks. The magic of nature is a strong theme in his work and his new direction seeks to find a place in the tradition of Canadian abstract painting. His mural for Concrete Canvas is a tribute to Victoria’s Grandfather of Graffiti and Street Art, The late Hans Fear.
Luke Ramsey, City of Victoria Artist in Residence
Luke Ramsey is an illustrator, designer, muralist and painter. In 2010, he completed a giant, collaborative outdoor mural with artist Josh Holinaty on the John Howard Society building in Edmonton, Alberta. The mural won an Award of Excellence from the City of Edmonton in 2011, and a 2012 National Urban Design Medal from the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada.
Ramsey co-founded the Islands Fold residency, exhibits internationally and works in public art, painting, and freelance illustration. His client list includes The New York Times, The Drake Hotel, Patagonia, The BC Children’s Hospital and more. Ramsey's book Intelligent Sentient? is published by Drawn & Quarterly, and was nominated for a Doug Wright Award. Luke's work is inspired by a continuous line in time, that draws from the inside, and paints over edge.
Kay is an artist and art educator. She has painted murals and hosted workshops for many local community initiatives such as Power to Be, PEERS, the Portland Hotel Society, the Overdose Awareness Peer Advisory Committee, Pretty Good Not Bad festival, Diversity Festival, and the League of Legendary Wrestlers. Her work has also taken her across Mexico, where she has lived for the last two years painting in festivals and on a commission basis. She wants to see Victoria with walls as colorful as the people inside them.
Kristofer Ray is a visual artist living in Victoria BC. Originally from Alberta, he has been creating art for over 15 years and is always striving to master and push his style to the next level.
Through his art Kris has developed a profound connection with organic geometric patterns. He has found that Indigenous cultures and ancient civilizations have harnessed these same geometric principles in their artworks. With this knowledge, he treats the creation of art as a sacred mediational process honouring the beauty and deep meaning that art gives to humanity. He uses intricate pattern work combined with a unique technique of mixing, and layering paint to create his works. Through the use of flowing space and rigid lines, he portrays the duality of the physical and metaphysical world.
Jesse Campbell is of Métis unceded Lekwungen territory of Victoria, British Columbia. He has been a practicing mural painter since 2010 and has helped produce many public art pieces throughout Greater Victoria and is now leading his own projects throughout the city. In addition to his mural practice, Jesse spends time mentoring youth on the craft of mural painting and understanding the diverse forms of Indigenous art across North America. Since a youth he has been inspired by the work of natural historians throughout the world as well as the writings of Joseph Campbell and the stories of the knowledge keepers of the territories he has lived. Jesse began taking his art more seriously while being mentored under Alex Clark, a long time teacher in the Victoria School District who recognized his talent and taught him to live and work in a good way. Jesse hopes to continue passing on these teachings through his art, his collaborations, and his students.
Jackson Butchart "Theme"
Bio coming soon!
Video credits: Joseph Klymkiw
Concrete Canvas was developed in response to input the City received during development of its Create Victoria Arts and Culture Master Plan last year, when street artists asked for more opportunities to participate in and exhibit their art in Victoria. The new Burnside Gorge Neighbourhood Plan also calls for temporary and permanent art opportunities to enhance linkages between the industrial and creative sectors.
The budget for the Concrete Canvas Rock Bay Mural Project is $150,000, which is funded by the City’s Public Art Reserve Fund. Each artist was paid a fee ranging from $1,250 to $4,000.
Concrete Canvas provides a platform for Victoria's vibrant art scene to contribute to the city's cultural legacy for years to come. The City of Victoria is collaborating with community members to build social capital, develop a sense of community pride of space, represent diversity, and empower people to make change in their city.
The launch party to celebrate the murals and artists was was held in August at the Hoyne and Driftwood breweries parking lot. Hosted by the Victoria Beer Week Society, the free event included a mural workshop, live music curated by Holy Smokes Music, a food and beverage area for all ages, and walking tours of completed and in-progress murals.
A huge thank you to the event host, Victoria Beer Week Society, Holy Smokes Music and Garden City Electronic Music Society for the amazing music, and the event sponsors who helped make the event a success: Driftwood Brewery, Hoyne Brewery, Oak Bay Bicycles and The Number.
Call to Artists
A call for entries was open to emerging and mid-career artists, or artist teams currently residing in Victoria and the Capital Regional District (including the Gulf Islands). Invitations were also issued to national and international artists by the Art in Public Places Committee.
Artists were to email their applications to firstname.lastname@example.org by Thursday, June 7, 2018 at 4 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.
Documents and Forms
- Concrete Canvas - Call to Artists.pdf [PDF - 167 KB]
- Concrete Canvas - Contact and Checklist Form.pdf [PDF - 32 KB]
- Concrete Canvas - Image Documentation.pdf [PDF - 67 KB]
- Deadline for receipt of application June 7
- Selection panel Mid-June
- Award of commission Mid-June
- Wall assigned to artist Early July
- Design supplied by artists Late July
- Installation of works August 12 - 27
- Launch event August 25
For More Information
Please email email@example.com.