Fish mural West Queen West

Iconic West Queen West mural needs a new home

It's been a fixture on West Queen West since 2009. Serving as the exterior facade at 1042 Queen West, the mural of a boy biting into a fish has brought a welcome dose of colour to a slightly tired stretch of the street for the last three years or so. And now it's on the move.

The Grid reported back in March that both the building at which the mural is placed and its neighbour to the east were sold to a single investor who plans on combining the properties. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the mural doesn't factor into the redevelopment scheme. It was, after all, intended primarily to cover up the worn exterior of an old printshop that had sat vacant for years.

The work of three artists — Alexa Hatanaka, Kellen Hatanaka, and Logan Miller — the mural is one of a number to grace the site since 2008, but it ultimately lasted much longer than its predecessors (the Grid article has an explanation as to why this was the case). The building that currently houses the mural is actually one of the better documented sites on West Queen West thanks to photographers Kevin Steele and Patrick Cummins, both of whom have tracked its various changes over the years.

We received an email over the weekend informing us that the mural is slated to be taken down in about a month's time. Although there are plans in place to preserve the artwork, the artists are currently searching for a new home. "We need a public wall with high visibility, preferably within the areas of Parkdale-Trinity Bellwoods," says Alexa Hatanaka of the relocation effort.

It'd be a shame to see this little bit of West Queen West history permanently removed from sight, so if you know someone with a wall in need of an artistic upgrade, leave a note in the comments section.

Photo provided by the artist


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