Peel Weekly News: MAC beautifies utility boxes with new art installations

Published in Peel Weekly News on November 4, 2021

Mississauga Arts Council (MAC) announced this week that three new utility box installations will beautify street corners, as part of its Murals with MAC – Boxes and Banners program.

“Murals with MAC is a neighbourhood beautification project that facilitates relationships between artists and community partners,” says Jacqueline Mak, MAC’s Creative Director & Strategist,

“Our program transforms dull, green and brown utility boxes into eye-catching landmarks. These hand-painted Bell boxes celebrate our City’s heritage and culture.”

The three new utility boxes will be painted by local artists Sima Naseem, Yen Linh Thai, and Khaula Mazhar.

“We have installed over 30 neighbourhood artistic landmarks as part of our Boxes and Banners program over the past 4 years,” says MAC’s executive director, Mike Douglas. “We are thrilled to have (these) new Bell box murals added to MAC’s ever growing list of utility box designs and we know the community will enjoy their flare.”

The Creativity of Careers, painted by Sima Naseem, is located at 5135 Glen Erin Dr, in Mississauga’s Ward 9. The imaginative design is inspired by the different types of career paths and learning opportunities available to students in nearby schools and libraries.

“Being a part of Murals with MAC gives emerging artists like myself an opportunity to make my little stamp on the City through my art.” says Sima, a visual artist and animator, “It’s incredible to have people in your own community supporting your work.”

“Painting this box allowed me to contribute something tangible to my community,” says Yen Linh Thai, an interdisciplinary artist, muralist, and illustrator,

“It celebrates the Mid-Autumn Festival observed by many East and Southeastern Asians, including my own family. I hope this mural brings joy to those who see it.” Linh’s box, Mid-Autumn Festival is located at 1270 Central Parkway West, in Mississauga’s Ward 6.

“Having art in public spaces not only beautifies the area, but it also gives a sense of pride to community members. It makes art available for more, not just those who visit a gallery,” says Mazhar, a visual artist. Her design, Luna and her Friends, is inspired by bees and nearby flowers. She hopes her box installation at 1311 Bristol Rd W, Mississauga, inspired the community of Ward 6 to plant native species of flowers to help the local bee population.

For more information, visit mississaugaartscouncil.com/programs/boxes-and-banners.