The Robert McLaughlin Gallery in downtown Oshawa is planning big changes to turn the large area behind the gallery into a community arts green space.
JUST THE FACTS
• The Robert McLaughlin Gallery (RMG) is the largest public art gallery in Durham.
• The plan is to turn the green space behind the gallery into an accessible, artist-designed gathering and play space.
• There will be a new permanent shade structure and seating.
• An indigenous medicine and butterfly garden will be planted.
• The design will adapt and creatively use the slope of the site to improve access throughout the space.
• A welcoming gathering space will be created on the gallery’s front steps.
• The project will involve commissioning and restoring public artworks.
• The gallery has collected community consultation and recruited an advisory circle of community members for the project.
• The City of Oshawa funded and installed a perimeter fence in the outdoor space last fall (2021) to provide a safe and secure area to support expanded RMG programs and services.
• The space is now regularly used by RMG summer camps.
• So far in 2022, the gallery has hosted three RMG Friday events outdoors — with over 500 attendees at a performance by local bands Dizzy and Wooly in May.
• To make the redesigned green space a reality, the gallery is partnering with LeuWebb Projects (which specializes in creating immersive public art installations) and Brook McIlroy (an award-winning landscape, architecture, planning, urban design firm).
• The work to transform the property behind the RMG it into a community arts green space is expected to be completed by spring 2023.