Repurposing Urban Space: Arts as the Catalyst for Change


Presentation Title:

  • Repurposing Urban Space: Arts as the Catalyst for Change



  • Keywords: Vancouver Park Board, Artist Field House Studio Residency, community-engaged art, urban space

    Parks throughout the City of Vancouver, British Columbia, have “field-houses” where on-site caretakers formerly resided and over time, have become vacated. Having a surplus of these unused facilities, the Vancouver Park Board explored options to repurpose these spaces. As part of the Cultural Plan, the City and Park Board sought to provide artists free space, in exchange for 350 hours of their time engaging the community and having opportunities to develop artistic practices. The Field House Studio Program places artists with community engaged and social practices into neighbourhoods to create work in and with community. The program brings the arts as an integral part of everyday life, into Vancouver neighbourhoods. It creates space to invite community, colleagues and curious visitors to share in intimate creative processes with artists through daily, shared arts experiences that are social, cooperative and collaborative. This paper seeks to demonstrate the importance of building arts communities, while emphasising its importance in emerging multi-disciplinary discourse related to urban futures.

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