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January 16, 2007
Grounds For Art: Winners announced for Regent Park public art competition
Mayor David Miller, Executive Director of Toronto Culture, Rita Davies, and Adonis Huggins, Director of Regent Park Focus, tonight announced the winners of the Grounds For Art public art competition at the launch of a special exhibition of all 30 short-listed proposals.

The winning designers by category are: Xin Xu, sanitary cover design; DeMuth Flake, storm cover design; and Rene Zamic, water valve cover design. The winning designs will be used to create custom-made utility hole covers that will decorate the new streets of Regent Park. Each of the winning designers will receive a cash prize of $1,800.

Mayor David Miller remarked, “Grounds For Art will turn ordinary public spaces into the extraordinary and serve to remind citizens that there is no end to the creativity and imagination of our community.”

The short list and winning designs were chosen by a selection panel convened especially for this project and made up of independent art and design professionals and representatives from Regent Park. The selection panel members are Catherine Goulet (Executive Director, Regent Park Neighbourhood Initiative), Adonis Huggins (Director, Regent Park Focus), Luis Jacob (artist), Paola Poletto (Senior Director of Programs, Design Exchange) and Nigel Smith (Partner, HahnSmith Design).

“Programs like Grounds For Art make a great contribution to Toronto’s street life,” said Rita Davis, Executive Director of Toronto Culture. “By bringing the arts to the entire community and by allowing the entire community to contribute to the arts, we can promote inclusivity and celebrate the great diversity of visions and voices in our communities.”

Two hundred and seventy-five people submitted nearly 600 designs to the Grounds For Art public art competition and the short list of design proposals can be viewed on the Toronto Culture website at The exhibition will run from January 16 to 21 at the Toronto Free Gallery (660 Queen St. E.).

Toronto’s streets are adorned with thousands of iron disks that go largely unnoticed but are an essential part of a functioning city - discrete portals between the city we live and work in and the working city. Custom-designed utility hole covers will transform these functional covers into public works of art, enhancing the character and vibrancy of public spaces for both people who live and work in the city.

City of Toronto Culture staff develop public art projects with the advice of the Art Committee for Public Places. Grounds For Art was developed in consultation with Regent Park Neighbourhood Initiative and will be implemented in co-operation with Toronto Community Housing and in partnership with City of Toronto Planning, Civic Improvements, Water and Waster Water Services, and Technical Services.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of more than 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years Toronto has won more than 50 awards for quality and innovation in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contact:
Toronto Culture Media Hotline, 416-560-8726



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