Plastics + Art is an initiative of the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) to form partnerships between the artist, industry, municipalities and regions for developing “plastic” art projects throughout Canada.

The Plastics + Art “Artist in Residence” program promotes relationships between individual artists and companies where they share knowledge, expertise and resources towards the research and development of a work of art, learning from each other in the process. The artists are given the freedom to design and oversee construction of their creations. The limits of scale and expense are developed by the parties concerned. Projects are linked to communities through public galleries, universities, municipalities and regions acting as facilitators of public art placements. As the third leg of the partnership structure, the facilitating organization integrates particular criteria for project placements according to the individual community. The end result is the creation of public works of art in highly visible locations such as airports, highway interchanges, museums, public buildings and parks, etc.

The unique situation to each Artist in Residence project is to be determined and integrated into each geographical and cultural context. The intention is to create partnerships relevant to the structure of artist and project selection, site selection and support, which generate the highest ideals of excellence against the backdrop of the public and the plastics industry. The community benefits from a distinctive work of art that becomes part of the urban landscape.

“Artist in Residence” projects currently entail the selection of five artists of national significance to work with sponsoring companies to research the creation of large-scale, plastic-based public art works in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver, Montreal and Halifax. Noel Harding, as artist in residence for the Municipality of Metro Toronto, developed “the Elevated Wetlands” in conjunction with CPIA.

Plastics + Art project development will inevitably broaden the ways of looking at new designs, new products and perhaps even stimulate new manufacturing procedures. By looking outside the realm of normal manufacture, the inherent strength and integrity of plastic materials can be delivered with a different kind of artistic beauty. Projects will showcase the unique use of certain plastic materials.

With the support of dedicated and concerned professionals from art, commerce, education and government, the Plastics + Art initiative provides a unique opportunity. Creative projects born from such collaboration will generate diverse benefits for society and for the participants involved.

Canadian Plastics Industry Association,
5925 Airport Road, Suite 500, Mississauga,
Ontario, L4V 1W1
Tel (905) 678-7748 Fax (905) 678-0774