There is a lot of great art above ground along the Canada Line which many travellers may not be aware of as they glide through the tunnels below the streets of Vancouver. One very notable example was created by Langara College students was unveiled in February 2012 outside Canada Line’s Langara/49th Avenue Station.
The eye-catching structure, entitled “Tread Lightly”, reaches a staggering 12’x5’x2’ in dimension and was conceived of and constructed by students in the Public Art Studio Practice class in Langara’s Fine Arts Program. The steel rod, acrylic, and wood sculpture is dotted with the silver footprints of the 11 students who contributed to its construction. It is intended to evoke ideas of travelling through nodes and connections, as well as climate change and the carbon footprint of each individual.
“The collaborative process was very exciting – as was the fact that this was completely student-generated and student-built,” said instructor Luke Blackstone, who teaches the Public Art Studio Practice course. “This project is the first of its kind for creative arts students at Langara. There are literally thousands of viewers who will see this installation every day.”
A main focus of the Canada Line Public Art Program is to feature the work of emerging artists, specifically work of students. The concrete wall on the north end of Langara-49th Station house has been reserved as a platform for Langara student art. In order to facilitate the installation of a wide range of work, be it two-dimensional, light projection or sculptural, a steel frame was constructed and fixed to the wall, thereby creating a set of specifications for future submissions and simplifying the installation/removal process.
Tread Lightly is the first project to be produced through a public art initiative created in partnership between Langara College and InTransit BC. It took nearly a semester for the students to complete before it was presented to a jury composed of representatives from InTransit and the College. It was formally selected in December and now graces the exterior of the west wall of the Canada Line station at the intersection of Cambie Street and 49th Avenue. The sculpture will remain for a minimum of six months and will then be replaced by a new piece of large-scale student art that is still in development.
Tomo Tanaka, the Chair of Langara’s Public Art Steering Committee, and the Division Chair of Creative Arts at the College, said: “I’m very excited to see this project come to fruition. It’s been a long journey, and I’m thrilled to see student work showcased at the 49th Avenue station in this way.”
To read original article please click here.