The Edmonton JUNOS 2023 Host Comittee partnered with four art students from two major Edmonton universities to create three stunning art installations to celebrate the JUNOS taking over the city.
By Emily Brown
Three art installations in celebration of the JUNOS coming to Edmonton can be found at Kingsway Mall, Londonderry Mall and West Edmonton Mall. Brought to you by four art students from two major Edmonton universities, it is a stunning and inspiring multi disciplinary collaboration between artists Winnie Uong, Christine Liang, Bridgette Crabbe and Aldricia Chong. Emily Brown of the Edmonton JUNOS 2023 Host Comittee had the opportunity to sit down with the artists to discover the inspiration behind the designs.
Student life is not an easy one. The four artists are all in the thick of their design degrees which already makes for a lot of sleepless nights but these women could not be knocked down. They were all brimming with excitement about the opportunity to work with the JUNOS and the Edmonton design community. They expressed that this was a high-stakes, high-reward type of project that they could not let pass by. They learned invaluable lessons throughout the process despite their being difficulties along theway. They learned how to fight for their own artistic vision. They learned how to negotiate and adapt when they were confronted with limits. And most importantly, they discovered what they are made of.
For all of us on Host Committee, it was particularly inspiring to witness the respect and friendship between the artists. The collaboration was done in two teams, working harmoniously together to complete these three installations. Winnie ia the Director and Christine is the Vice Director of the Student Design Association at the University of Alberta. Together they created the industrial design elements of the project. Bridgette and Aldricia are both a part of the Design Students Organization at MacEwan University. And these two focused on creating the graphic design elements of the project. All the artists were so generous in how they spoke about one another’s disciplines. They expressed that seeing how their disciplines work together in practice instead of just hearing about it in the classroom was invaluable to them. They all enjoyed learning from one another and have come away from the project richer for it.
The beauty of the project is not only in the art that is presented to us but also in the values that were carried throughout the project. It saw multiple disciplines come together: music, graphic and design. Another fascinating component to this collaborative Edmonton design story: it is a majority women-led project. Two prominent Edmonton designers, Chris Provins and Jordan Tomnuk stepped up for their community and offered mentorship to the students. All the materials are locally sourced from Edmonton-based Carbon Graphics. This was an imperative component to the project for all involved.
It’s no surprise that it came together like this, the project was spearheaded by Faaiza Ramji and Amor Provins, two strong women that value art, community and mentorship. They made sure those values were woven throughout the project. I don’t know about you but for me getting to talk to four enthusiastic artists about something they made is the exact right stuff. I couldn’t stop grinning throughout our entire interview. Winnie, Christine, Bridgette and Aldricia’s enthusiasm for their project was infectious. It was so exciting that as soon as our meeting was over, I had to get on the LRT and see the first installation at Kingsway Mall for myself. I had a perfect afternoon taking it in and highly suggest you do the same. Art brings us together if you let it. Behind every piece of art, there is a message left for us letting us know that weare not alone.
I hope you can carve out a little bit of time for yourself to take some in and don’t forget to buy your JUNOS tickets here.