Before I Die, a community-oriented, interactive public space art project taking place around the world, was launched September 24th 2012 in Toronto at the southwest corner of Dufferin Street and Queen Street West by Melissa Ip. A chalkboard wall transforms a neglected and inactive space in the city into an animated public space that invites people to share their hopes and dreams in a fun and creative way.
The original installation was created by New Orleans-based artist Candy Chang on an abandoned house in her neighbourhood. The idea came after she lost someone she loved very much and she wanted to know what was important to the people around her.
The project has appeared in cities worldwide including Melbourne, Beirut, Dubai, Almaty, Trujillo, and San Francisco. Some responses are humourous while others are ambitious. Although answers were from different parts of the world, there were many similarities across countries of what people hoped for in life: family, friends, career, travel, happiness, and fulfillment.
Royal Queen Developments, the developer of Q Loft, donated a portion of their hoarding for Before I Die Toronto. The project is being carried out by a group of residents in Toronto who are generously volunteering their time. The Toronto Public Space Initiative has been a supporter of the project since the beginning, providing consulting services and some funding in addition to helping to find and secure locations.
About Before I Die Toronto
Before I Die Toronto is a giant chalkboard built in Toronto intended to promote community vibrancy and to encourage people to share their hopes and dreams in public space. To learn more about Before I Die Toronto, visit facebook.com/beforeidieto
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