Murals are a beautiful way to enrich the seemingly banal.
Over the weekend, a group of Saanich residents and volunteers came together to throw a mural repainting party in order to help their neighbourhood maintain its vibrancy.
This past Sunday, August 20th, over 30 people from the Falaise Community Association, the neighbourhood’s residents along with the Greater Victoria Placemaking Network gathered on Falaise Crescent in Saanich and threw a party to repaint their beloved mural.
Not only did the mural get some much needed touch-ups, but the volunteers also expanded the mural which was originally designed and painted by local artist Desiree Shelley.
Shelley worked hand in hand with the neighbourhood in 2022 to try to come up with a design that would be representative of the community and decided upon painting a series of yellow montane violets which is a rare flower that happens to grow naturally in Falaise Park.
This year, purple camas were added to the original design.
“The addition of stylized camas flowers to the mural reflects the camas meadow our volunteers have restored in Falaise Park,” said Stuart Macpherson, President of the Falaise Community Association.
“An event like this really illustrates the community spirit in the Falaise neighbourhood.”
Teale Phelps Bondaroff, Saanich Councillor and Pocket Places Project Lead with the Greater Victoria Placemaking Network focuses a lot of his efforts on placemaking in and around the city in an effort to beautify the region and add substance for residents and visitors alike.
“This road mural is a fantastic example of the power of placemaking – they beautify streets, build community, and improve road safety,” said Teale Phelps Bondaroff, volunteer with the Greater Victoria Placemaking Network and Saanich Councillor.
“Studies have found that road murals encourage drivers to slow down, thereby improving road safety.”
This mural project was a pilot which was funded by the District of Saanich and placemaking grants. Phelps Bondaroff hopes to see more projects like it emerge throughout Greater Victoria in the coming years.