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Public Art News

CONNECTIONS; D. Welch, S. August, S. Bedard.

Public Art is an exciting and expanding endeavour in Surrey that identifies sites, creates tourist destinations, interprets community history and diversity, inspires thought, and adds artistic vision to a place.

Find out about the latest public art projects and scroll down for any related events like openings or artist talks. We also have an e-newsletter you can sign up for to receive updates about our Public Art Program.

Artist Calls

If you're an artist looking for public art opportunities, visit our Public Art Artist Calls page.

Anthony Gabriel’s Artwork on 2018 Surrey Street Banners

Blue herons will fly over the streets of Surrey this spring. Kwantlen First Nation artist Anthony Gabriel was inspired by these coastal birds considered to be good luck by fishermen. The artist says, “To me they symbolize patience.”

The design was recommended by a committee of Elders of the Katzie, Kwantlen, and Semiahmoo First Nations. This is the concept drawing—check back for further updates as the work progresses.



On the Living River public art sculpture by internationally renowned artist Casto Solano to arrive next year to Fraser Heights Recreation Centre

The Public Art Program is excited to announce that a public art sculpture proposal by acclaimed Spanish artist Casto Solano was unanimously recommended for commissioning by a selection panel made up of citizens who live and work in the Fraser Heights neighbourhood. Pacific Academy Art Teacher Andy Kuo, Fraser Heights Secondary Art Teacher Norma Nickel, Fraser Heights Real Estate Expert Mitch Redekop, and long-time resident Paul Orazietti were among those recommending Solano for commissioning. Their recommendation was supported by the Public Art Advisory Committee and approved by Council.

Solano’s proposal was mainly inspired by the Fraser River. He writes: “I see the Fraser River as the tail of a comet, carrying life within it, plunging down into the earth. I imagine the river rising up, winding and whirling high into the open sky; connecting the four elements of our world. Connecting earth and air in a shimmering river of steel water; redirecting the light and fire of the sun gently about us in warm reflections as we step to meet it. An organic, living conduit through which to explore our own connection with our community and the world which surrounds us. An iconic meeting point about which to gather and share our knowledge and experience. A point of unity for the diverse peoples of Surrey. For those who have gone, for those who are, and for those who are yet to come.”

Solano has designed numerous sculptures that exist throughout the world. His collection includes a permanent public art sculpture outside the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao and a recently completed Holocaust Memorial for Children in Paris. Solano’s sculpture for Fraser Heights will be built of marine grade stainless steel and will be illuminated with different colours at night. As with all public art projects, the sculpture will undergo multiple engineering reviews to ensure that it meets the requirements of the BC building code and does not present any safety concerns. It will be robust to have a lifespan of more than 50 years.

Look for Surrey Landscapes on Alan Storey's Sign of Signs


Sign of Signs is a wind-driven kinetic sculpture by Alan Storey. This billboard-style artwork features rotating imagery showing Surrey's changing landscape over the years. Installed on the warehouse wall of the City of Surrey's Operations Centre, it mimics the shape and proportions of the Operation Centre's distinct architectural form.


Newton Rec Centre is home to Sean Alward's Fern Façade


A new public artwork graces the windows of the Newton Recreation Centre expansion, inspired by the indigenous plants growing nearby in "The Grove". Made of frit glass, Fern Façade is highly functional, helping to moderate the temperature of the building by filtering sunlight as well as reducing bird-window collisions.

Chrysalis at Surrey Central SkyTrain Station

The City of Surrey, in partnership with TransLink, received submissions from 29 artists for a temporary mural to surround the construction hoarding of Surrey Central SkyTrain Station while TransLink upgrades the station. Applicants were asked to draw inspiration from the theme Connecting People, Connecting Places.

This detail is from the winning design Chrysalis by Thomas Nelles, a Surrey artist. Butterflies overlay images of Surrey’s buildings to symbolize the city’s transformation from its agricultural past to its urban present and its goals for a sustainable future.

Blanket Proposal for West Village Park & District Energy Plant

Artist-in-residence Erica Stocking has completed the community consultation phase of this project and has now proposed a permanent public artwork of three blanket-shaped sculptures to be installed on the roof stacks of the Energy Plant. They will be made of fibreglass or metal and appear in different configurations: folded, draped, and wrapped.

This artwork responds to the service and intention of the Energy Plant: to provide energy and warmth to the City Centre neighbourhood. In this way, the sculpture is also a creative and contemporary symbol of a “hearth” that extends from the home to the entire community. The artist writes: “Blanket evokes a sense of warmth without using fire. Perhaps a contemporary hearth does not involve fire at all, but is the sharing of space. In a simple way, this artwork translates the piping of the building as a carrier of warmth in a materially and visually tangible form.”

Erica Stocking is a multimedia artist with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Emily Carr University of Art and Design. She has exhibited art since she graduated in 2004. In 2009, Erica completed the public artwork Yellow Fence at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby and, in the same year, was awarded Vancouver Mayor’s Art Award for Emerging Public Artist. In 2012, she completed Geyser for Hillcrest Park, a permanent public artwork made for the City of Vancouver in collaboration with Vanessa Kwan, facility staff, parks board, and various engineers.

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