Coming Soon: The Hope in Chinatown Mural

The Hope in Chinatown is a mural project led by local artist Wenting Li and Toronto Chinatown BIA to express courage, light and community resiliency.

In the coming weeks, STEPS is working with Chinatown BIA and artist Wenting Li on a new mural located at Pho Pasteur (525 Dundas St. W) in Toronto’s Chinatown located in the laneway parking lot entrance behind Dragon City Mall. With lots of pedestrian and car traffic, as well as visitors dining outdoors due to COVID restrictions, this site was located to brighten a busy location with feelings of hope and courage during a time of struggle for both local businesses and the community.

Mural production is set to begin in September with this activation being Wenting Li’s largest mural project to date! During the design implementation period, Wenting and Chinatown BIA are interested in gathering community feedback to shape the final design of the mural led by the question, “As you dream of the future facing down on us, what hopes (large and small) do you carry for Chinatown and for our communities?” 

To share your thoughts and receive the latest updates, be sure to follow our social media posts and Instagram stories (@STEPSpublicart, @torontochinatown and @wentingthings) to get involved! 

About Chinatown bia

Photo of picnic tables with printed artwork on the sidewalk of Spadina Ave, storefronts and the CN tower in the distance

Photographer: Selina McCallum

As the Innovation Award Winner of last year’s Main Street Art Challenge presented in partnership with RBC Royal Bank, Chinatown BIA received financial and other support (including artist fee subsidies) for future placemaking and COVID recovery initiatives. The Hope in Chinatown mural is being implemented as part of their prize package with additional support from Dulux Paints. Chinatown BIA is also part of this year’s 2021 I HeART Main Street where all participating BIAs have a chance to win prizes valued at $30,000 to recognize exemplary public art projects. 

About the artist

Illustration by Wenting Li, featuring a yellow bridge in a pale pink skylines - colourful characters celebrating lunar new year are walking down

Procession, Wenting Li, Twitter – 2021.

Wenting Li is an illustrator, painter and comics-maker born in Sichuan, China and working out of Tkaronto. Wenting is interested in colour and shape, nonlinear storytelling, the subtleties of complementing diversity in story with representation and image, personal and community histories, and tracing curves.


The Hope in Chinatown Mural is in partnership with Chinatown BIA and Dulux Paints. 

Chinatown BIA and Dulux Paints logo

It is also made possible through STEPS Public Art’s I HeART Main Street program presented in partnership with RBC Royal Bank and the City of Toronto, and generously supported by the Canada Healthy Communities Initiative funded by the Government of Canada, Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, and the Ontario Ministry of Heritage Sport, Tourism and Culture through Ontario ReConnect.

Logos for RBC, City of Toronto, Canada Healthy Communities Initiative, Government of Canada, Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, and Province of Ontario through Ontario ReConnect
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