Whyte Avenue music mural sandblasted and destroyed

A mural on Whyte Avenue depicting three musicians playing the clarinet, violin and guitar — an homage to Edmonton’s music scene — was sandblasted and destroyed early this week.

The mural, outside the Gordon Price music store, had been there for more than 30 years

Malcom Swann said the mural, painted by artist Toti, had been outside the closed Mother's Music store for more than 30 years. Today, this is all that remains of the mural. (CBC News )

Malcom Swann has enjoyed the mural by artist Toti outside of the Gordon Price Family music store on Whyte Avenue for more than three decades. 

The mural depicts three musicians playing the clarinet, violin and guitar — an homage to Edmonton’s music scene.

But sometime early this week, the mural was sandblasted and destroyed.

“The Gordon Price family served the community of Edmonton for over fifty years from that location and they put Toti’s mural on the front of the building over thirty years ago,” said Swann, who works on Whyte Avenue. “That’s a tribute to musicians of Edmonton.”

The music store is now closed and the building has been sold to new owners.

CBC News was not able to reach the real estate agents to find out whether it was them who removed the artwork.

The mural was the last one painted by artist Toti still standing in Edmonton. The other one, located on Jasper Avenue, was destroyed by development in the 1990s.

Swann is disappointed the mural is now gone.

“I think the history of Edmonton and the history of art in Edmonton is precious and we should do all that we can to hold onto those things,” Swann said.

Today, the artist Toti lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and art dealer Peter Lewis, who said they will be contacting the real estate agents to find out why this piece of Edmonton art was destroyed.

“Most cities like to protect their work and they have bylaws enforced [to] not have this thing happen,” Lewis said. “These valuable art works — once they are gone, they’re gone.”

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