Arts

These artists are saying thank you to Canada's heroic healthcare leaders

For your daily pick-me-up, here are some artist initiatives paying tribute to frontline workers fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic.

For your daily pick-me-up, here are some artist initiatives paying tribute to frontline workers

These artists are saying thank you to Canada's heroic healthcare leaders

2 years ago
Duration 1:21
Artists are finding creative ways to support healthcare leaders and frontline workers fighting against the COVID-19 outbreak. 1:21

With self-isolation in full effect across the country, it can sometimes feel like we're worlds apart. But Canadian artists are bringing us together through their creativity, taking on projects that are paying homage to public healthcare leaders and frontline workers fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Below are four initiatives by artists that'll warm your heart.

Mandy Stobo

Mandy Stobo's t-shirt designs celebrating Canadian healthcare officials. Left to right: Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Dr. Bonnie Henry, Dr. Theresa Tam. (Mandy Stobo)

Two Calgary fashion brands, Madame Premier and SophieGrace, teamed up with local artist Mandy Stobo to create portrait t-shirts of healthcare officials leading Canadians through the COVID-19 outbreak. The limited edition t-shirt collection resonated so much with communities that it is now sold out, with proceeds being donated to support food security: to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, Second Harvest in Toronto and Fresh Routes in Calgary.

Amy Shier and Vicki Ferguson

Vancouver roommates Amy Shier and Vicki Ferguson penned a musical ode to B.C.'s Dr. Bonnie Henry, a lighthearted and fun song that speaks to the importance of social distancing and how we as a community can help flatten the curve by staying at home.

Allison Dakin

Portraits by Allison Dakin. Right: Dr. Deena Hinshaw. Left: Dr. Li Wenliang. (Allison Dakin)

Allison Dakin drew portraits paying tribute to Alberta's Dr. Deena Hinshaw and to Dr. Li Wenliang, the Chinese doctor who first warned about the possible outbreak of COVID-19. In her Facebook post praising the work Dr. Hinshaw has put forth in helping to handle the COVID-19 pandemic, she says, "Dr. Deena Hinshaw is an icon in Alberta during this international crisis. She is calm, reasoned and clear in her messaging." She continues, "This portrait isn't just to admire one, but every health care professional working in the frontlines to help us all. Thank you." For her portrait of Dr. Wenliang, a portion of the proceeds from every print will go to Doctors Without Borders and Dakin is saving the original painting for his family once she's able to reach them.

Kim Briscoe

Emily Carr student Abi Taylor finishes a painting of Dr. Bonnie Henry on a boarded up window. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

In B.C., shop owner Kim Briscoe is calling on artists to paint her boarded-up picture framing shop. Artists have already begun painting beautiful murals of healthcare leaders and frontline workers, coming together to celebrate these everyday heroes.

Sarah Orsmond's mural on a boarded-up Kimprints window in Vancouver’s Gastown. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)
Artists Christina Hryc, left, and Olivia Knight are pictured in front of their mural in Vancouver's Gastown. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)
Murals of doctors are painted on boarded up windows in Vancouver's Gastown on Tuesday, March 31, 2020. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

Thank you to all the amazing healthcare officials and frontline workers working to keep our communities safe and informed during this time. The work you're doing is recognized and appreciated.

What are some initiatives that you've seen? Let us know!

CBC Arts understands that this is an incredibly difficult time for artists and arts organizations across this country. We will do our best to provide valuable information, share inspiring stories of communities rising up and make us all feel as (virtually) connected as possible as we get through this together. If there's something you think we should be talking about, let us know by emailing us at cbcarts@cbc.ca. See more of our COVID-related coverage here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kiah Welsh is a digital video producer at CBC Arts. She loves to travel and owns over a hundred pairs of sneakers.

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