FIFTH YEAR OF ARTS FESTIVAL SHOWCASES LOCAL AND NATIONAL TALENT
BY LORI LEWIS
Winnipeg will be an even more colourful city after September as a result of the Wall-to-Wall Mural & Culture Festival that’s taking place all month long.
Wall-to-Wall celebrates the diversity of local and national artists, inviting them to showcase their work. This is the fifth year of the festival and the first year that musical talent is being featured in addition to the visual artists. The festival is produced by Synonym Art Consultation in partnership with the North End Community Renewal Corporation and Graffiti Art Programming.
Sherbrook Street is home to a few of the new murals that have been painted this month. One of them now electrifies the north side wall of Stella’s bakery; it’s eye-popping colours demand attention from both indoor and patio customers alike. The mural was painted in just a few days by Edmonton artists Annaliza Toledo and Trevor Peters of Fresh Canvas Art Co. They were asked by Synonym Art Consultation to create a colourful piece of art similar to one they had painted on the side of a popular Filipino restaurant in Edmonton called Kanto.
“We wanted this piece to be fun, quirky and colourful,” said Toledo. “It has cats and birds living together in harmony.”
Peters explained that about 90 per cent of the mural is painted free hand with spray paint and that they don’t usually keep track of how many hours they put into a piece like this.
Across the street on the west side of The Tallest Poppy at 103 Sherbrook Street, there are two new murals, painted by sisters Ekene and Mercedes Maduka.
The peacock on the left is bright blue with a flowing pink and blue tail, designed and painted by Ekene Maduka.
“I chose a peacock because it has a lot of colours.” she said. “It stands for pride and it’s a happy bird.”
The round vase filled with flowers was designed and painted by Mercedes Maduka who typically paints conceptual pieces but decided to focus on aesthetics for this piece instead.
Khao House, located at 126 Sherbrook Street, now hosts the mural that was painted by Vancouver artist Sandeep Johal. This piece is similar to others she’s created in the past, and the first one she’s painted in Winnipeg.
There are many more murals popping up in Winnipeg all month as a result of the festival. The hashtag for the festival is #walltowallwpg.