The International Avenue Business Improvement Area was tired of waiting for signs of spring. So, they went out and created it themselves.
They sought the help of 10 city artists to give 17 Avenue SE a sprout of spring colour.
“Spring starts on March 20, and there’s really nothing that looks like spring in Alberta, so we thought why don’t we have some artists come up with something that reminds them of spring,” said Alison Karim-McSwiney, the executive director of the International Avenue BIA.
There are 10 art installations in the Spring has Sprung works along 17 Avenue SE, starting with six in Unity Park.
Take a virtual tour of International Avenue’s art
Jenna Frishcke is on the west side of Unity Park, on the far left of the Green Wall.
Cattails a Plenty
Leah Petrucci’s art installation is on the northern part of Unity Park.
Flawrz 4 U
Rawry & Pohly, a couple that work together and sell their artwork online through Etsy, have their piece to the right of Petrucci’s.
Flowers in the Forest
Karen Begg set up her piece next to the Life in the Village of Forest Lawn mural by Eldon Walls, which is on the Dental Hygiene Clinic wall and the southern part of Unity Park.
A Lily for Two
Karen Ho-Fatt Lee has a water lily in the centre of Spouting Fountain in Unity Park.
Bright Lights, Day or Night
Stephanie Chan’s piece shines in the sun, and lights up at night on the east side of Unity Park.
Frank The Flower
Tim Knelson, the shop manager for Fuse33 Makerspace, made the piranha plant-like sculpture from Styrofoam and concrete and sits in front of Level Up, a video game store on International Avenue.
“It has a sort of homegrown feel, to the point where the inside of the pipe actually has dirt like a real plant would. I think that’s a very nice touch,” said Kyle Snyder, an employee at Level Up Games.
“It’s a very natural fit to this area, and especially right beside the store having such an iconic videogame character that’s not so mainstream, but also still relatively well known. It’s very nice.”
En Garde! Fencing for Two
Brandon Tyson shares his art with Paula Timm on fencing that stretches along International Ave from 35 to 36 Street SE.
Calla Lily at The Wash
Freddy Rivas and Oscar Rios of SpanicArts, a non-profit art organization with the purpose of developing the Hispanic community in Calgary, have their Calla Lily by 17th Ave Car wash on 36 Street SE.
Local artists were paid $800 to create the works throughout International Avenue, and they are in a contest where Calgarians can vote for which one they like best, with the winner receiving $1,000. The contest ends on March 28, 2022. Vote for your favourite @intavebrz on Facebook.
The BIA is also drawing from those that voted and will be giving out two gift baskets worth $500 and $250 to the winners drawn.
There are now 50 pieces of art on the street with these new spring art installations.
The spring art showcase will finish on May 28, when International Avenue will receive fresh new flowers around the area.