It’s no surprise that urban condo developers and local artists have historically butted heads. 

In recent years, however, the relationship between the two has evolved into a mutually beneficial one. Art attracts discerning future residents, and its display in shiny new buildings offers exposure to local artists. 

Now, an increasing number of home builders are turning to local artists to complete their internal and external aesthetic. 

Most recently, Toronto-based developer Parallax (who famously hosted a pandemic condo launch at a drive-in) partnered with Partial, a Canadian online marketplace for Canadian artwork, to display the work of Canadian artists in its latest condominium development, Theory Condos. 

Located at College and St. George streets in Toronto, the new building is now open and sold-out. Here, residents and visitors can experience the works of Partial artists like Raquel Da SilvaCarrie Chisholm Morgan AbenhaimSarah ArsenaultJason ZanteKyle YipParveen DhattMekayla DionneLorna LiveyGillian Toliver, & Harley Yang.

“At Parallax, we’re committed to delivering developments that reflect our contemporary, forward-thinking corporate philosophy, which very much includes supporting local talent,” said Nigel Lawson, principal at Parallax. “Partial has such an exciting selection of work from artists across Canada. We’re thrilled to offer a platform for these pieces to be viewed by new audiences.” 

In selecting pieces for Parallax’s Theory Condos, Partial’s founder Tammy Yiu Coyne, looked specifically for artists and art works to suit the interior designer’s room design for each floor. Working together with Lawson, they looked at how the art reflected the uses of the common space and how the artists themselves were reflected in the space. For example, many of the artists featured are from OCAD U, which works in partnership with Partial to showcase their graduating students.

“This was such a fun project and a terrific partnership,” said Yiu Coyne. “When I started Partial five years ago, it was with the mission of getting more art on more walls. Parallax has a strong commitment to using its public spaces to showcase Canadian artists and we were thrilled to collaborate with them to display new talent in their space. My hope is that other developers will follow Parallax’s lead and use their public spaces to promote artists across Canada. It’s a win for everyone!”