This city is famous for its authentic Asian dining, ever-inviting parks and the historic charms of Steveston Village. But there’s another scene here that doesn’t receive quite so much attention, even though it’s far from hidden away.
Richmond is home to a huge and fascinating array of public art. And––so long as you know where to go––planning your own citywide art crawl is a great way to enjoy a cost-free cultural day out here.
Keen to snap some artsy selfies on a sunny Richmond day? Read on for our handy resources plus a photo gallery of some of our favourite installations. And don’t forget to use the #RichmondMoments hashtag when posting your images on social media–-we’d love to see your art-loving photos!
The City of Richmond’s dedicated online map shows you exactly where to find dozens of local public artworks. It’s a great way to locate all the installations in a specific neighbourhood or choose must-see works throughout the city and then plot a route between them.
To make things even easier, we’ve also curated three special Google Maps, each focusing on a different part of the city. Check out one or all of these area art crawls on your next Richmond visit.
Our Oval Village map plots more than a dozen diverse installations in and around the landmark Richmond Olympic Oval. It includes Janet Echelman’s Water Sky Garden, a huge undulating red net suspended on poles; Pat Talmey’s Spawning, a water feature teeming with shiny metal salmon; and Susan A. Point’s hidden gem Buttress Runnels, a drainage system adorned with stylized animals.
Alternatively, our Steveston Village map points you to 14 installations, many evoking Steveston’s colourful past. We especially love Mia Weinberg’s Back on Track outside the Steveston Tram pavilion. It’s a huge carving of a 1956 interurban tram route map, depicting the old system’s surprisingly extensive reach. Our third art crawl is easy to access without a car. Alight at the Canada Line’s Richmond-Brighouse Station, then explore 19 or so city-centre installations via our Brighouse map––all are reachable on foot within a few blocks of the station. That includes David Jacob’s towering steel creation Together; Nathan Scott’s bronze Richmond’s Firefighter; and Alberto Replanski’s abstract steel and marble Harmony.
Need more inspiration? Scroll down for photos, location information and short descriptions of some our favourite Richmond public art installations. How many of these have you seen around the city?
Artist: Sergei Traschenko (2009)
Location: 7700 Minoru Gate, Richmond, BC.
A short canter from Richmond’s main public library, this handsome bronze horse statue recalls the origins of adjacent Minoru Park. Now a popular greenspace with gardens and sports facilities, it was once the home of a busy horseracing track. The track was named after Minoru, the legendary equine that won the UK’s Epsom Derby in 1909, and this sculpture was unveiled here a century later.
Artist: Norm Williams (2009)
Location: 12138 Fourth Ave, Richmond, BC.
Located outside the main entrance of the Gulf of Georgia Cannery, it’s easy to think you’ve just stepped into a lively conversation between the three figures depicted in bronze here. A brilliant reminder of Steveston’s cannery-era heyday, who knows what this fisherman, docker and cannery worker might be discussing?
Artist: Nathan Lee (2016).
Location: 6340 No. 3 Road, Richmond, BC
Arguably Metro Vancouver’s most whimsical public artwork, it’s hard not to smile at this utterly charming creation. Exit from the Canada Line’s Richmond-Brighouse Station, walk along the sidewalk underneath the elevated concrete guideway and then look up––you’ll find three bright red beavers and their carefully crosshatched dam marking the very end of the transit line.
Sea to Sky
Artist: Thomas Cannell (2021)
Location: No. 3 Road and Cook Road, Richmond, BC
Created by Musqueam artist Cannell, this semi-translucent artwork graces multiples levels on the corner of the city centre’s Paramount building. Like a huge contemporary stained glass window, the richly detailed work incorporates swirling representations of eagles, whales, salmon and stars. Head across the street for the best views of this dramatic work.
Artist: Paul Slipper (2008)
Location: 6620 Garden City Road, Richmond, BC
Another smile-triggering creation, this series of granite sculptures depicts large fern fronds, each with a friendly human face. According to an adjoining panel, the artist is reflecting the idea of a community that becomes evermore rooted to its home as it grows, develops and matures. “It is these root systems that provide the base for future generations to live and prosper,” says the panel.
Artist: Glen Andersen (from 2020 onwards)
Location: 5180 Westwater Drive, Richmond, BC
Andersen’s delightful animal-themed driftwood sculptures are dotted around the popular Britannia Shipyards heritage attraction. The first one appeared in 2020 and, on our visits, we’ve spotted a seal, a beaver and a heron that all look surprisingly lifelike, despite being crafted from twisted twigs and branches. Keep in mind that these artworks won’t last forever and will gradually fall apart as nature reclaims them.
Artist: Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas (2015)
Location: 1000-7899 Templeton Station Road, Richmond, BC
Take a break from shopping at McArthurGlen to contemplate this monumental outdoor artwork, fashioned from more than eight tons of steel, copper, granite and marble by an artist who pioneered the fusion Haida Manga approach. Representing a curving, 12-metre-long whale leaping from the water, you can walk under this amazing contemporary art creation––which makes it the perfect spot for a cultured selfie or two.
The Spirit of Haida Gwaii: The Jade Canoe
Artist: Bill Reid (1994)
Level 3, International Terminal, Vancouver International Airport
Celebrated artist Bill Reid created this monumental bronze for YVR, and its prominent location makes it one of the region’s most-visited artworks.
Next time you’re at the airport, take your time and explore its features at length. You’ll find many fascinating animals and creatures crowding the canoe––we were delighted to find the Mouse Woman on our recent visit. Visit this page for more information on YVR’s extensive art program.
Last Updated on May 25, 2023 by Tourism Richmond