An exhibition presented in partnership with Contemporary Calgary. 

As part of the WATERSHED+ Dynamic Environment Lab, five artists were recently embedded within the Utilities & Environmental Protection Department. The intention of the Lab was to foster an innovative and collaborative public art practice, explore the complex relationships between citizens and their watershed, and support cross disciplinary methods of working by bringing artists, subject matter experts and members of the community together to collectively experience Calgary’s dynamic environment. A thoughtfully considered program was laid out for the Lab, taking the participants on an expansive journey of Calgary’s watershed.

The Lab was intended to be a launch point for each of the artists. Taking their learnings from the Lab, they developed individual projects to build and nurture relationships with City staff and other subject matter experts as they explored the impacts of our continuously shifting environment.

The DYNAMIC ENVIRONMENT exhibition marks the culmination of the artists’ works as we reach the conclusion of the Dynamic Environment Lab.


Opening Reception & Panel Discussion
Thursday, September 26
5-9 p.m.
Contemporary Calgary
Join WATERSHED+ Lead Artists, Sans façon, along with all five DE Lab artists for an intimate and illuminating discussion, delving into the history and creation of the project, and the artists’ experiences working within the City of Calgary. Moderated by Amery Calvelli, this discussion intends to showcase the success and challenges of The Dynamic Environment Lab as part of WATERSHED+, and how the program has affected the direction of public art in Calgary.
This event is free and open to the public but advanced registration is requested. Please click here to register.
Parts Per Trillion
Friday, September 27
9 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Edworthy Park, Picnic Area (East) 
Join DE Lab artist Steve Gurysh as he completes his artwork, Parts Per Trillion. Gurysh’s all-day event will start off at 9:00 AM in Edworthy Park. Watch the pit-firing process begin as the artist fills the fire pit with his 3D printed ceramics and kindling and lights the fire that will, over the course of the day, harden the ceramics and produce his finished work. At 10:30 AM, after the fire gets roaring, the artist will present a short artist talk and Q&A. Steve will be on-site all day to tend to the embers. Stop by at any time to learn more about the artist’s process and the Dynamic Environment Lab project.
Flow Paths: Artist Talk
Friday, September 27
1 - 2 p.m.
Contemporary Calgary Auditorium 
Join DE Lab artist Tim Knowles and learn about his residency at the Inglewood Bird Sanctuary. Knowles has been working closely with staff responsible for restoring and rehabilitating the natural habitats damaged by the 2013 flood. He will be speaking about how this relationship has helped inform his art work and how he has been able to work as an artist on design elements for the upcoming Inglewood Bird Sanctuary Reconstruction Project.
Surfing Underground
Friday, September 27
6 - 8 p.m.
Contemporary Calgary Auditorium 
DE Lab Artist Stokley Towles has worked within a variety of City Services across North America. In his performance work, Stokley incorporates stories, images and artifacts from the underground world of Calgary’s Water Services employees to create an immersive experience for his audiences. Connecting viewers to the people behind our infrastructure, Stokley showcases the importance and intrigue of our often hidden city systems. Following the performance, join the artist in the gallery space to learn more about his experience within the project.
How Deep Is Your Love? 
Saturday, September 28
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Sunday, September 29
1 - 3 p.m.
Tours begin and end at Contemporary Calgary. 
Join DE Lab artist Becky Shaw on a guided two hour tour and interactive performance, listening to the water infrastructure using analogue geophones. By experiencing infrastructure above and below the ground, through the intimate experience of listening for leaks, Becky invites participants to think about the ways individuals and infrastructure are connected. The tour starts at Contemporary Calgary and visits neighbourhood locations by bus. All are welcome, including children. Tour will be conducted in English. Please wear clothing appropriate for the weather, especially sturdy footwear as there will be a small amount of walking and standing.
Registration is required. Please click here to register.

September 27 - 29

Culture Days is a national celebration of arts and culture. At the end of September, millions of people attend thousands of participatory arts and culture events across the country. Culture Days programs invite the public to get hands-on and behind-the-scenes to highlight the importance of arts and culture in our communities.

The City’s Arts and Culture Department will be showcasing artists of various mediums to inform and promote cultural opportunities in the City. Art as it relates to the Calgary environment will be featured prominently over the course of the three day event.

*The Dynamic Environment exhibition programming is also being promoted as part of Culture Days weekend.

Friday, September 27

Culture in the City
Video Projection, outside wall of the Municipal Building atrium 
7:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
This video projection will feature a cross section of culture in Calgary's urban and natural environments. Culture in the city can take many forms, from iconic landmark buildings in the downtown Core, to manhole covers, art installations and architecture, and institutions like the newly restored Contemporary Calgary. The exploration of Culture in Calgary takes on endless forms.
Print It Yourself: Manhole Covers
8th Avenue, outside of the Glenbow Museum
11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Alberta Printmakers are pleased to host the manhole covers printmaking session for the Kick-off to Culture Days 2019. Drop by and get involved in our Print It Yourself stations. No experience is necessary and we encourage participation from all members of the public. Come together and strengthen Calgary’s Culture community!
Jazz Music in the Park!
Devonian Gardens, CORE Shopping Centre
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Keyboardist Steve Fletcher has an exceptionally broad range of musical influences that have shaped his playing over the past 30 years. His proficiency on numerous keyboard instruments such as piano, electric piano, organ, accordion, and synthesizers, has enabled him to carve a niche in the Alberta music scene as an eclectic performer and in demand session musician. Steve began piano lessons though the Royal Conservatory of Music at age 7. Over the past 20 years he has performed and recorded with countless artists, and has toured throughout North America, Europe and Japan. He has opened for such notable jazz artists as Medeski Martin & Wood, The Bad Plus, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Cassandra Wilson, and John Abercrombie. He won a 2012 Canadian Folk Music Award, and was nominated for a Juno in 2013.

Saturday, September 28 & Sunday, September 29

Where We Have Walked: Walking Tour
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Sunday, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Tours begin at the Wolfe and the Sparrows sculpture in Inglewood, SE corner of the 12th Street Bridge 


A walk along the Bow River pathway, through East Village and into the downtown core reveals compelling stories about the original people of this area. Presented in collaboration with Fort Calgary, The Calgary Public Library, and the City of Calgary Public Art Program, this walk experience is designed to give participants an expanded view of our history and shared reality in Calgary, through Public Artworks and significant sites. The walk will move from The Wolfe and the Sparrows sculpture in Inglewood, to Fort Calgary. Participants will learn about the ways they fit into larger cultural realities that are often not discussed.
The walk will take approximately 2 hours, including interpretive stops along the way, so please pack and dress accordingly.
Following the walk, you are invited to join a celebration of the official unveiling of Project Bookmark Canada at Loft 112, on September 28 at 1 PM, and a tour of Indigenous public art works at the Calgary Public Library on September 29th, at 4 PM. 

Registration is required for this free event. 

To register for the Saturday tour at 10:00 AM, please click here.

To register for the Sunday tour at 1:00 PM, please click here.

Firefighters Holding Fast

On the second Tuesday in September every year, Calgary honours its fallen with an annual memorial ceremony. Did you know that there is also a public artwork honouring Calgary Firefighters? Entitled Holding Fast, the artwork consists of 11 circular paintings, the largest being 2.5 metres (8 feet) across and the smallest measuring 0.6 metres (2 feet) wide. The artwork was completed in 2018.

The artist, Doug Driediger, is a Calgary-based muralist and graphic designer who graduated from ACAD in 1980 with an honours diploma focusing on painting. He is also the Founder and Creative Director of Metrographics, a design and advertising studio that specializes in fine-art-based problem solving.

The artist stated: “The mural’s central, anchor image depicts a current firefighter reaching up to grasp the hand of a historic firefighter – connecting the old with the new. The historic firefighter wears the mitt which was the standard kit in the early 20th century. This strong grip pose communicates the message “I’ve got you”, capturing the values of the Fire Department while also speaking to support in situations of physical danger as well as mental illness. The connection between past and present creates a memorial of lives lost but remembered.”

Additional paintings include depictions of:

  • Calgary’s Historic #1 Fire Station, with firefighters posing on an extended truck ladder around 1912;
  • Firefighters in action at the H. Davidman Furniture fire in 1949;
  • The Honour Guard uniform trim;
  • A vintage fire truck (Aerial Truck #53) at a warehouse fire in 1973; and
  • The Memorial bell used during the annual firefighter memorial ceremony.
The public artwork is available for viewing in the public lobby of the Fire Headquarters building at 4144 11th Street SE.

Doors Open YYC: Public Art Collection Storage Facility


On Sunday, September 29, The Public Art Collection Storage Facility will be open to the public as part of Doors Open YYC. Guests are invited to learn about this climate controlled facility and how we protect the collection, and how we store, move, install and exhibit valuable pieces of art both big and small.
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Public Art Program · 2105 Cliff Street SW · Calgary, AB T2S 2G4 · Canada