James Street South Mural Public Art Project

Image of James Street South Sidewalk, wall painted mural, a residence, and Go train

Banner photo credits (left to right):  Kim-Kiu Ho, Ryan McGreal, Tom Flemming, Rick Cordiero, Swire Chin

The City of Hamilton is undertaking a public art competition to replace the existing mural located on west side of James Street South across from the GO (former TH&B) Station.

Public Consultation – What is your opinion?

A jury of volunteer citizens and artists has reviewed 31 artist/ artist-led team’s submissions and has short-listed 6 for public consultation. Before they meet to select the winning proposal they want to know your opinion.

Please review the project goal and themes, view the artist/artist-led team’s proposals, indicate your preferred proposal, and provide comments for the jury.

Opinion Survey

Please fill out the public opinion survey for the James Street South Mural Public Art Project.

You may also review the proposal booklets and provide comments in person at the following location:
The Tourism Hamilton Information Centre
28 James Street North, Ground Floor (The Lister Building)
Monday through Friday 9 am to 4 pm

City staff will be available to answer your questions at The Tourism Hamilton Information Centre during Art Crawl on Friday March 9, 2018 between 7 and 9 pm. Please provide your comments before Sunday March 18, 2018.

Your comments will be provided to the jury for consideration among other criteria such as artistic excellence and technical experience in their selection of the winning proposal. The results of this public consultation are therefore not binding on the jury.

A report outlining the jury’s final decision and reason for that decision will be posted on this webpage when the winning artist/ artist-led team is announced.

Public Consultation Results

The public consultation results are coming soon.

Call for Artists

The Call for Artists for this project closed Thursday November 23, 2017. Thirty-one proposals were submitted. The jury has met and Stage 2 proposals have been selected. Thank you to all of the artist/ artist-led teams that made a submission.

​James Street South Mural Call for Artists (PDF, 286 KB)
​James Street South Mural Call for Artists Appendix A – Submission Form (PDF, 104 KB)
​James Street South Mural Call for Artists Appendix B – Site (PDF, 5.6 MB)
​James Street South Mural Call for Artists Appendix C – Artist Agreement (PDF, 253 KB)​

September 29, 2016  7:00-8:30 PM
Tourism Information Centre, 28 James Street North


Caroline Sutton, Local Resident        
Bryce Huffman, Artist
Clarence Porter, Artist
Victoria Long-Wincza, Hamilton Conservatory for the Arts
Frances Murray, Durand Neighbourhood Association

Pam Mulholland, City of Hamilton, Cultural Projects Specialist (Presenter)       

Ken Coit, City of Hamilton, Program Manager Public Art & Projects (Facilitator)

Cameron Topp
Paven Bratch
Laura Babcock
Sue Stewart-Greene


The City of Hamilton is currently undertaking a Public Art Competition to replace the existing mural by Graham Muir located on west side of James Street South at the GO (former TH&B) Station. The purpose of this focus group is to determine themes/goals for artists to address in the public art call that will be inspirational to artists and meaningful to and representative of the local community.


Pam Mulholland made a presentation outlining the City’s public art process, goals and themes presented to artists for other public art competitions, and technical criteria for outdoor murals.

3.0 Discussion

The following question was presented to the group:
What are the qualities, characteristics and stories of James Street South that you think should be the theme of the public art mural south of the T.H.& B. Railway Bridge?

  • The site has been the location of a railway station for over 100 years and has a rich history associated with the TH&B Railway current and past stations.
  • Unique Geography – the street is defined by the escarpment that terminates the view to the south and the railway-bridge and causeway to the north.
  • The neighbourhood has a very natural character with many mature trees and the treed slope of the escarpment visible rising to the south.
  • A sense of being below grade - the site for the proposed mural is the side of a cut into the ground where the road was lowered from the natural grade in the 1930s to accommodate the railway bridge.
  • The site is seen a gateway to the City for commuters and visitors as it is visible from the GO Station. It is also a gateway to the Durand Neighbourhood and to the Downtown.
  • The art should embrace the architectural heritage of the area. Consider the colour of the local building materials such as limestone and salmon-coloured brick that are prevalent in the neighbourhood.
  • The work should be reflective of the vibrant new businesses and spirit of revitalization on James Street South
  • The work should be inviting/have a sense of arrival.

4.0 Priorities

After discussion it was generally agreed that the following would be included as direction and information for the artists in the Call for Artists document.

  1. A short history of the T.H.& B. Railway and the adjacent neighbourhoods,  including the fact the public art site was originally above grade, a site where the trains crossed James Street South before the grade separation and creation of the railway bridge.
  2. That the proposed art work should be welcoming and invite a sense of arrival to Hamilton, as well as help minimize the negative effects of the railway bridge concrete structure and its dark tunnel.
  3. The subject of the mural should be reflective of an aspect of one or more of the following themes:
  4. The location as a  gateway to the neighbourhood, downtown and the city;
  • The natural character of the street as a geographic connection between the escarpment and downtown and between the historic grade and new current street level.
  • The rich architectural heritage of the Durand and Corktown neighbourhoods.
  • A vibrant community undergoing revitalization.

5.0 Next Steps

The priority statements resulting from this focus group along with technical and site criteria will be used by the City to develop a Call for Artists Document. The City will also develop a short history of the area to be included in the call document to inform artists’ proposals.

It is anticipated that this call will be issued via the Public Art page in the Winter of 2017.  Once issued, proposals from artists will be due 6-8 weeks later.

Contact us

Ken Coit
Program Manager Public Art and Projects
Tourism & Culture Division, City of Hamilton
28 James Street North
Phone: 905-546-2424 ext. 6281
Email: ken.coit@hamilton.ca