British Columbia

Health workers honoured in art on boarded-up store windows

Two murals of Dr. Bonnie Henry and Dr. Theresa Tam have already been painted on the boarded up shop windows of Kim Prints in Gastown.

Business owner calls on artists to depict doctors, nurses, after portraits of top health officers are painted

Portraits of health officers Theresa Tam (left) and Bonnie Henry have been painted on the boarded-up windows of Kimprints in Gastown, Vancouver. The store's owner is encouraging artists to paint frontline health-care staff, as well. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

A Vancouver business owner who boarded up her shop windows is calling on artists to paint pictures on them featuring the faces of people involved in the fight against the spread of coronavirus.

A couple have already been painted: portraits of Canada's chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam and B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.

Kimprints owner Kim Briscoe says the idea came to her after she closed up her picture-framing store in Gastown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I started putting the word out to artists that I know: Let's do some pictures of Dr. Theresa Tam, she 's always in the news, and so is Dr. Bonnie Henry," said Briscoe.

"I just thought ... they're always working so hard, and I thought I'm going to give them a shout out."

Kimprints owner Kim Briscoe in front of a mural she had painted on her store in Gastown. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

Artist Breece Austin said she was drawn to Tam and chose to paint her.

"She just kind of had this grab for inspiration," Austin said. "Something about her ... was really awesome to paint."

Briscoe says other artists are coming on Wednesday to paint doctors and nurses working on the front lines of the crisis. 

Emily Carr student Abi Taylor finishes a painting of Dr. Bonnie Henry on the boarded-up window of Kimprints on March 31. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)
More boarded-up windows at Kimprints will provide a canvas for other artists to paint pictures of frontline health-care workers. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

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