Gastown businesses team up with artists to inspire hope (PHOTOS)

Apr 6 2020, 3:47 pm

In a collaboration between Gastown and Vancouver artists, the boarded-up businesses of the city’s oldest neighbourhood feature local artists’ murals of hope.

Businesses that have been interrupted due to shutdowns hope to spread some good vibes in what Gastown BIA is calling a “virtual gallery,” with unique creations and tributes.

Gastown BIA was inspired by some of the murals depicting Canadian health authorities — and the faces of the fight against coronavirus — Dr. Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer of BC, that were painted in Vancouver.

“Inspired by these works, a number of Gastown businesses and the Gastown BIA are collaborating with local artists to create more art in storefronts over the weekend under the themes of hope, positivity, kindness, and gratitude,” said Gastown BIA in a statement.

“The BIA is also encouraging people not to see these works as a physical gallery but a virtual one as images are shared online.”

Saturday saw the creation of more than a dozen works of art on boarded-up shops in Gastown, and we’ve got a look at them here.

“Recognizing that health and safety are the main priorities at this time, the Gastown BIA is working with local businesses to supply artists with not only paint, materials, honourariums and food vouchers for local businesses, but also sanitation equipment and items to create a safe perimeter while they work,” said Gastown BIA.

Artists include Olivia Knight, Breece Austin, Piers Lawson, Bronx Cut, and more. These Vancouver-based creators have displayed their commissioned pieces in businesses like L’Atelier, OK Boot, Bruce Eyewear, Lemongrass House, and others.

More murals are expected to be created in the coming days and weeks.