The Thomas Haney Schoolyard Action Park poetry and art project was officially unveiled on Sunday.
The artwork was installed at the youth action skate park and was commissioned through the Maple Ridge Public Art Program.
“This is actually one of our Canada 150 celebration projects. So this is really a community legacy,” said Yvonne Chui with the City of Maple Ridge.
About a dozen youth worked on project including students from Maple Ridge Youth Council and from Thomas Haney secondary.
Six students contributed their poetry and two others contributed art and one printed photographs for the project.
The students worked with Sto:lo/St’át’imc multimedia artist Ronnie Dean Harris and Vancouver sculptor and designer Mary-Ann Liu to develop ideas for the surfaces of the concrete planters surrounding the skate park and for vinyl wraps for the garbage containers.
Concrete was poured into the planters and stamps were created based on the students’ artwork and poetry and stamped into the concrete .
“The designs were an additional element that actually ended up being sandblasted because two of our youth students have a First Nations connection and so therefore the creations are a little bit more complex,” said Chui who thought the idea was great to have a combination of words and artwork in one piece.
Thomas Haney secondary poetry slam winners Sienna Notley and Sophia Sityar had lines from their poetry stamped into the concrete.
Notley’s read, “You can feel yourself straining, Like a villain fighting their inescapable doom.”
Sityar’s, “It’s time I start reading on from where we left off.”
The project has been five months in the making.