With joy and enthusiasm, illustrator Natalie Mark has created banners for Chinatown! Their work is inspired by the Dynasty Building’s public garden, a place where people from all walks of life meet. The eight banners are a visual “garden” to share people’s experiences that history has forgotten or ignored, and to honour community teachings.
This artwork is shaped by Natalie’s life-long relationship with the
neighbourhood, their parents’ experiences as workers here, and the complex realities
of people living in the area. Chinatown is more than stereotypes, more than
what you can find in historical documents, and more than land for development.
These banners celebrate the whole community to create a complete picture of the
The Buddhist Treasures you see on these banners — Conch Shell, Victory Banner, Parasol, Lotus Flower, Treasure Vase, Pair of Fish, and Endless Knot — share lessons of compassion. This is similar to the Seven Teachings of Honesty, Humility, Courage, Truth, Wisdom, Respect, and Love. The Seven Teachings act as guiding principles in how we can live alongside one another. These days, many schools in Winnipeg share the Seven Teachings to inspire the next generation toward reconciliation and compassion.
that visitors, residents, and workers alike enjoy the new banners. Their goal
is to thoughtfully show the current Chinatown community. You are invited to
explore the food, medicine and tea shops and restaurants, to smile at your
neighbours, and to see Chinatown with new eyes.
This public art project is a collaborative initiative between the Winnipeg Arts Council and the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ. The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ promotes, cares and advocates for a vibrant and inclusive downtown where business thrives and people are drawn to live, shop and explore.
Thank you to Dr. Tina Chen, Kwok Ngan, Pauline Leung, Dr. Jiuyong Xie, Yikun Wang, Szu Shen and Sarah Michaelson for sharing your wisdom with us.