Toronto City Council has adopted a report to champion public art in city-building.
By implementing Toronto Public Art Strategy 2020-2030: Creativity and Community Everywhere, the city intends to make Toronto a global leader in civic installations.
The plan seeks to extend the benefits of projects city-wide and build on its ability to advance broader local-building priorities such as equity and inclusion, environmental resiliency, and reconciliation with Indigenous communities.
The vision is to promote new and innovative approaches to its creation, tell stories that build and connect artists and communities, and have artworks in every neighbourhood. Twenty one actions are recommended in the report to advance public art locally and heighten the impact of the city’s art programs for residents and visitors.
As declared by Mayor Tory in November, the Year of Public Art in 2021 will be the first major programming initiative related to the strategy. More than 1500 works of public art can be found across Toronto—including works commissioned by the city, its agencies, developers, arts organizations, and business improvement areas.
The region currently delivers three major public art programs: the City of Toronto Public Art and Monuments Collection, the Percent for Public Art Program, and StreetARToronto. Together, these initiatives have had a major impact on the area’s urban fabric, assembling a collection of public art that, in the number of works alone, is of international significance.
“Toronto’s arts and culture sector is vibrant, diverse, and growing, and it is a key component of the economic success of this city,” said Tory. “I’m proud that under my leadership, the area has enhanced its commitment to arts and culture, and with this new strategy we will ensure that Toronto is more surprising, beautiful, challenging, and inspiring.”