THRIVE Grant Application: Gibsons Art Walk Project
On September 7, 2021, Gibsons Council endorsed the Gibsons Public Art Committee’s ICET THRIVE grant application to create a Gibsons Public Art Path.
The grant application, which requests $50,000 in funding, envisions a public art path, which would link new and existing public art installations between the Upper and Lower Gibsons business centres.
The art path would take visitors from the Town’s entrance at Gibsons Creek (near the Chekwelp Squamish Lands) and through the Lower Gibsons business centre and shoreline, including stops at existing public art displays at the Gibsons Public Art Gallery, Town Hall, Gibsons Public Library, Gibsons Public Market and Arts Building. The path would then continue up the Inglis trail to an Upper Gibsons residential neighbourhood and along to Gibsons’ commercial strip on the Sunshine Coast Highway.
Selected new public art installations would be added to strategic sites along the path, as trailhead markers, and featured standalone and forest installations.
The Public Art Committee would work with the local creative community to manage an open submission call for the new public art installations. Additionally, an Indigenous Curator would be appointed to liaise with Squamish Nation culture authorities and Squamish artists.
A decision on the grant application is expected by mid-October.
Public Art Policy Review
At present, the Public Art Advisory Committee is working to develop a new Public Art Policy to help guide the augmentation of public art within the Town of Gibsons.
On May 4, 2021, a revised Public Art in Public Spaces Policy was received by Council. Read related Staff Report and the new policy here.
Policy updates included adding a clear reference to Squamish Nation in the policy’s Purpose section, in keeping with Council’s recent adoption of UNDRIP for use as a framework for indigenous reconciliation.
The mandate of the Public Art Advisory Committee is to advise Council on the implementation of public art policies and projects for the Town of Gibsons.
The Committee strives to incorporate best practices with the aim to:
- Strengthen and enhance civic pride and the identity of the community;
- Recognize and preserve our cultural heritage and artistic diversity;
- Increase the number of public art projects undertaken;
- Increase the opportunities for local artists to create and display their work;
- Increase public awareness and appreciation of visual arts through the display of public art works;
- Engage the community in discussions and decisions regarding public art projects;
- Incorporate artwork and beautification in both public and private developments of significance; and
- Leave a lasting legacy for future generations.
The Committee comprises up to 7 members and strives to reflect Gibsons’ cultural diversity and geographic setting.
Membership is determined as follows:
One (1) Municipal Councillor;
One (1) representative of the Gibsons Public Art Gallery; and
Up to five (5) representative(s) of the community at large with knowledge of or experience in the following:
- Fine or Visual arts;
- Urban planning;
- General interest in community-based art programming.
Read the complete Terms of Reference for more information on the Public Art Advisory Committee’s Duties and Responsibilities, Appointment and Membership, and Meetings.
A Public Art Advisory Committee was first appointed by Council in 2006, to respond to interest expressed by the community in acquiring and displaying art to culturally enrich public spaces in the Town of Gibsons, including those in new developments. After completing several public art projects, that initial Committee was eventually disbanded.
In late 2019, Council began working to establish a new Public Art Advisory Committee after recognizing renewed community interest in the idea, as well as an increased opportunity to acquire public art that will help to distinguish our community and to foster a sense of pride and attachment to public spaces and buildings.
In early 2020, a revised Terms of Reference document was adopted by Council and a call put out for Expressions of Interest from community members who would like to serve on the Committee.
In April 2020, Mayor Bill Beamish appointed the following people to the Gibsons Public Art Committee:
- Mayor Bill Beamish (Representative for Town of Gibsons)
- Ashley Sager (Representative for Gibsons Public Art Gallery)
- Siobhan Smith
- Diana Robertson
- Ann-Marie Brown
Since the appointment of the members, the committee has been meeting regularly via Zoom and in person. Read the meeting minutes below:
On October 20, 2020, Council voted to return the Public Art in Public Spaces Policy to staff for review. See the related Staff Report and policy here.
In early 2021, the Mayor wrote about the challenges associated with developing a Public Art Policy in an opinion piece which ran in the Local newspaper.
The column generated many responses from our community, both from people who are against the idea of public art and those who are in favour of it. In March 2021, the discussion was continued, with a second piece on the same topic.
To share your thoughts on Public Art and its potential role in the Town of Gibsons, please email Mayor Beamish at firstname.lastname@example.org.