The BUMP Road Works Program was launched in 2021 through the City of Calgary to create safer adaptive patios and road infrastructure. The Road Works program creates small scale public art installations on concrete traffic barriers that go on to be utilized in neighbourhoods across Calgary. Artists who are curated to be a part of Roadworks are given the opportunity to typically create a series of 2-5 Road Works pieces, encouraging them to think about art that is functional, playful and transient in the public realm. Road Works barriers provide a canvas for artists who like working on unique surfaces, it can be an interesting opportunity to experiment with design and functionality, or it can be a way for emerging artists to learn and practice scaling up their work.
While we know that the Jersey Barriers artists’ paint will end up all over the city, there is certainly an element of surprise in not knowing exactly where your piece could go. Our Roadworks artists design and paint their canvas’s with this in mind – that their art has the capacity to spark joy, wonder, play and dialogue in a variety of different neighbourhoods, potentially even traveling further than one site and reaching new eyes every day.
For 2022 we launched two separate Road Works initiatives, one in the early summer, and one in the fall. For the first, we had 17 local artists paint barriers that can be found all over Downtown, The Beltline, Kensington and more. With this program being such a hit, we were asked to bring Road Works back, this time to the community of DOVER on 34 Avenue S.E.
In 2023, we relaunched Road Works with 20 new artists to create new and innovative designs. This year’s barriers explore a variety of themes from colourful cartoons to playful patterns and aesthetic landscapes. Road Works barriers from this year can be seen lining the streets of 4th St SW, 17th Ave SW, Inglewood, Kensington, Bridgeland & The Beltline.
SUMMER ROAD WORKS 2023
John F. Gerrard
Maya Rae Faucher