Arts

The Chinatown Remixed art festival is an outdoor, month-long event featuring local artists. Photo: Liya Huang.

Chinatown Remixed street art festival begins month long exhibition

Nothing represents Canada better than its diversity and multiculturalism. So it’s fitting that Chinatown, one of the most diverse and colourful areas of Ottawa, will be transformed into an indoor and outdoor art show over the next two months.

This event is better known as Chinatown Remixed, a gallery where artists get the opportunity to place their work all over the neighbourhood.

From coffee shops to pho restaurants, and even grocery stores and travel centres, residents and pedestrians can catch a glimpse of  local works of art spread out on massive murals or shop fronts.

“You’re seeing art where you wouldn’t 100 per cent expect to see it,” said Jess Alysworth, a University of Ottawa alumna whose sculpturesque art piece is on display in the window of the Shanghai Restaurant. “Chinatown Remixed is as eclectic as it is beautiful. We’re all here to celebrate our differences and our creativity.”

Alysworth collaborated with two other artists to create a three-dimensional work of art resembling tree roots to help express the theme of interconnectivity, which is central to the whole art show.  

“The cool part of collaborating with people is you all end up doing something slightly out of your everyday practice. You try new things and you’re open to new perspectives,” she said.

During the vernissage day on Sept. 24, Chinatown was thriving with activity. All the artists were present and people attending were able to chat with them about their art and purchase their pieces.

“I loved being able to meet the artists in particular, Florence Yee, because her art really resonated with me,” said Amy Yee, an attendee of the exhibition. “And having the opportunity to be able to talk to her and connect with her … it was really meaningful. Chinese-Canadian culture is so unique.”

Chinatown Remixed had a little bit of everything and for all ages. From live art painters and dance performances to DJs and dishes of Chinese-Canadian cuisine, it was nothing short of a memorable experience.

If you’re an artist who is interested in having your works displayed here for the next celebration, Chinatown Remixed accepts applications every year.

“Get the courage to start. Once you start getting involved you’ll find more and more opportunities, it will just come to you. Be determined and have confidence in your own art, ” Alysworth shared.

Chinatown Remixed is set to run until Oct. 29, so if you didn’t come on the opening day, you now have the perfect excuse to stroll around Chinatown and enjoy some Vietnamese pho, Indian samosas, and bask in multiculturalism.