Thank you to our supporters!
The Inspired Art Impact project is made possible through our partnership with Toronto Metropolitan University. We would like to acknowledge the generous support of the City of Toronto, MITACS, RBC Royal Bank, the Government of Ontario, Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts. The City of Toronto’s Main Street Innovation Fund is funded by the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
This project is part of I HeART Main Street, a program supporting Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) with the support they need to activate their main streets through public art and placemaking. This program engages BIAs, local artists and businesses across Ontario to create more vibrant and safe communities.
The CreateSpace Residency is supported by the City of Toronto as part of ArtworxTO: Toronto’s Year of Public Art 2021 – 2022, TD Bank Group through the TD Ready Commitment, Canada Council for the Arts, and Ontario Arts Council.
Project Type: Interactive Installation
Artist: Meghan Cheng
Project Statement: As part of the 2022 CreateSpace Public Art Residency, artist-in-residence Meghan Cheng took part in STEPS’ Inspired Art Impact pilot project in partnership with I HeART Main Street to transform the front of Korman & Company offices in East Toronto. For this project she created the interactive light installation, titled "You Were Here", specifically for the site. The work is composed of hundreds of 3D-printed butterflies that glow with LED lights triggered by the motion of passersby.
About the BIA: The Riverside Business Improvement Area is one of Toronto’s first BIAs, founded by local business and property owners in 1980. The BIA spans 10 vibrant blocks of Queen St East from the iconic Queen Street viaduct (Riverside Bridge) at the Don Valley, to just east of the world-famous De Grassi Street. Riverside is Toronto’s small- town-in-the-big-city. Rich in history and art, the area boasts over 100 unique eateries, shops, and attractions (see our Riverside Online Directory). The BIA is home to the Riverside bridge – illuminated nightly in dynamic colours – The Broadview Hotel, The Opera House, two breweries and Toronto’s first cidery, and much more to explore.
STEPS' Inspired Art Impact study intends to develop and pilot a toolkit that STEPS, central street community groups, Business Improvement Areas (BIAs), and city developers working to revive main streets and core spaces in cities can implement to evaluate and measure the impacts of public art projects.
"You Were Here", the Inspired Art Impact pilot project, is part of I HeART Main Street, a program supporting Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) with the support they need to activate their main streets through public art and placemaking. This program engages BIAs, local artists and businesses across Ontario to create more vibrant and safe communities.
The CreateSpace Public Art Residency is a national program designed in consultation with advisors from coast to coast, to provide emerging Black, Indigenous and racialized artists with the skills, relationships and practical experience needed to take their public art practice to the next level.