If it's been a while since you last strolled down Quinpool Road, consider this your sign to plan your next visit to the area. You'll find that things have gotten a little more colourful in this iconic Halifax neighbourhood.
In July 2022 Quinpool Road was one of the primary locations to host the inaugural Halifax Mural Festival. The event brought local and international artists to Halifax to create murals on Quinpool Road and across the Halifax Waterfront. Over the course of the week established and emerging artists brought life and colour to some of Halifax's most iconic public spaces and beloved local businesses.
Of particular note are the changes to the Quinpool district. Quinpool Road is now home to nine new murals and six painted power boxes that have been transformed into works of art. The talent and creativity of the artists who participated in the festival has enhanced the area, bringing new life to the neighbourhood.
Read on for a look at the latest artistic additions to the Quinpool Road streetscape.
The Halifax Mural Festival was created by Trackside Studios (@trackside.studios), a local studio specializing in murals, custom artwork, sign painting, and traditional graffiti lettering. If you've spent time in Halifax, chances are you're familiar with Trackside's work. The studio has been responsible for dozens of well-known murals throughout the region (and beyond), including 'Victoria, Roman Goddess of Victory' in Downtown Halifax, 'George Dixon' in Africville Park, 'The Sea in Her Blood' at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, and many more.
1. Memories of Quinpool at Busan Korean BBQ
Haligonian artist Dan Burt has created several well-known murals around the city, including "Connections" in Downtown Halifax. Burt's mural for the Halifax Mural Festival, painted on the wall of Busan Korean BBQ, is an homage to the history of the Quinpool area, featuring beloved local landmarks including Video Difference, Hogie's Steakhouse, and the Oxford Theatre.
2. John Dunsworth at Pro Skates
This piece, painted by @jeks_nc, honours the late John Dunsworth, known for his role as trailer park manager, Jim Lahey on the cult classic comedy series, Trailer Park Boys, set in the fictional Sunnyvale Trailer Park in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.
"Massive thank you to @halifaxmuralfestival @princefuze for bringing me back to beautiful Nova Scotia for another mural. It was a huge honor to paint John Dunsworth in the community he was such a big part of."
3. Rainbow Tiger at Naughty Paw
June is from Toronto, Ontario. Her colourful, illustrative style is inspired by her love of natural and urban environments - and more specifically, folk art in Korea.
“My paintings are imbued with the symbolic forms and language of Korean cultural heritage, reimagined in response to the contemporary context of my lived experience.” - @junekima.rt
4. "There's No Place Like Home" at East Peak Climbing Gym
"This building was previously a long standing and well loved cinema by everyone in Halifax. We wanted to honour that history and chose a quote from The Wizard of Oz which was one of the films played during the closing week of the cinema in 2017. Now run as a climbing gym by @eastpeakhfx and a brewery @oxfordtaproom."
5. Blue Jay and Lupins at Classic Physiotherapy
Donny currently resides in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He has spent time in Wolfville, Yarmouth and Saint John, New Brunswick.
Donny’s style is derived from classic fine arts studies, combined with a passion for Graffiti and murals. Inspiration comes from an appreciation of east coast Canada's environment and the mural movement.
6. The Brewery by Quinn's
Swade Owens was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario and has been living in Halifax for the last 10 years. He is a multidisciplinary artist working in painted murals, freemotion embroidery and leather craft.
“I try to bring fun into everything I make. I am very into the process of making art and exploring the continual growth of self.” - @swadeowens
7. "The Best is Yet to Come" at Dilly Dally Café
I am so honoured to be part of the first ever @halifaxmuralfestival 😭 Incredibly grateful to @princefuze for inviting me to be part of it, @dillydallyeats for being the sweetest people on earth, and @freemanslittlenewyork for the wall!! The best is yet to come YALL. ✨
8. Cattails and Pansies
For this piece, I wanted to draw the viewer into a scene of nature and abundance. I've been interested (as have been people I draw inspiration from) in "future imaginaires": the futures as we can imagine it, not just as is expected. A lot of my interest in foraging, hand-sourced materials and organic patterns stems from this. While paint is harder to adapt in this way, I was pleased to be able to use @trackside.studios' leftover latex paint for all of the background. I chose cattails and pansies because both are edible and abundant (and they seemed well suited for Halifax's pride parade).
9. Dog mural behind Fitness FX
Emmanuel Jarus is a Canadian-born artist and muralist inspired by the visual human experience. His work reimagines how art can exist in public spaces. For the past 10 years, Jarus has been working with communities across Canada and around the globe to produce large-scale portraits and figures among other images on wall surfaces. They can be found in major cities as well as across rural settings. He has had notable recognition as a contemporary muralist and figurative painter.
10. Power box by Mique Michelle
Mique Michelle is a Franco-Ontarienne, originally from West Nipissing. Her graffiti can be found all over the world. She uses graffiti as a way to create awareness about the oppression that visible and invisible minorities face. She is convinced that murals, just like elements of hip hop, can offer solutions to stop discrimination.
Franco-Ontarienne, femme. Du Nipissing Ouest, Mique a comme objectif d’abolir les stéréotypes négative du Graffiti. Elle espère également sensibilier le publique aux réalitiés des minorités visibles et invisibles ainsi que s’assurer que la jeunesse et les communautés dont elle visite ont les outils pour partager leurs messages. Aussi de mettre de la couleur sur tous les murs!
11. Power box by Duane Jones
Duane Jones (he/him) is a Bermuda born multi-disciplinary artist, currently based in K’jipuktuk (Halifax). His work is rooted in his identity as a cisgender Black man who subversively explores topics of race, culture, gender and sexuality in the form of painting, illustration and graphic design.
12. Power box by Molly Margaret
Molly Margaret is from St. John's, Newfoundland and is currently living in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
“My work is largely inspired by plants and botanicals, East Coast imagery and culture, as well as architecture and people wearing tiny boots. I prioritize creating joyous, colourful, and whimsical work for everyone to enjoy.” - @mollymargaretart
13. Power box by Morgan Drew
Morgan Drew is from Halifax, Nova Scotia and has been based in London, England for the better part of the past 8 years.
“These compositions are to space, what music is to time, and the way I relate the two has a lot to do with my decision making process in making the work.” - @deliveravalon
14. Power box by Anisa Francoeur
Fun fact: In addition to her work as a freelance artist and designer, Anisa is also the creative force behind Dartmouth's Dear Friend Bar, among other local businesses.
15. Power box by Nessy
Nessy is a digital and mixed media artist from Preston, Nova Scotia. She enjoys experimenting with a variety of tools and techniques to produce work that represents an expression of her worldview, informed by layers of Black experience.