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Panel Discussion: Public Art and Social Engagement in Toronto’s Lawrence Heights

  • Room: 205, Accolade West, York University 89 York Boulevard North York, ON, M3J 2S5 Canada (map)

Presented/Organized by May Chew Ph.D, MITACS Elevate Postdoctoral Research Fellow Sensorium Centre for Digital Arts and Technology, York University

Description:  Lawrence Heights is a community in suburban Toronto that faces major challenges including  social isolation and marginalisation. Home to more than three thousand residents, it is currently  undergoing a massive redevelopment project which will transform it into a mixed-income,  mixed-use neighbourhood. Slated to unfold over the next 25 years, the revitalization presents an  opportunity to examine the ways in which art and social engagement can foster participation and  inclusion during a time of upheaval. Our panel offers diverse approaches to the risks and rewards  of making way for public art during revitalization, while converging on the importance of  socially-engaged and community-centred methods in creating dynamic terrains of civic  interaction. We ask: How can artistic practice engage the diverse identities and histories of a  community as it undergoes profound transformation? What is the role of public art in the creation of more equitable and inclusive cities of the future

Moderated by May Chew Ph.D, MITACS Elevate Postdoctoral Research Fellow Panelist: Janine Marchessault, Professor York University; Liz Forsberg, Ontario Trillium Foundation; Asad Raza, Project Manager Landslide Project;