Alex Kwong, The Way, 2019, detail shot.
This permanent mural is located on the backside of The New Gallery in the Historic Canton Block Mural Alley in Calgary Chinatown.
In August 2019, under the guidance of the Calgary Chinese Community Service Association and Chinatown District BIA, the two-storey backside of The New Gallery’s Main Space was transformed into a mural called The Way, by Alex Kwong. This new work added to a significant collection in the mural alley behind the historic Canton Block in Calgary Chinatown, which “share[s] stories about the roots of the Chinese community in Calgary.”
Kwong states that his mural was inspired from Daoist beliefs and artworks where one is carried off by a crane when they achieve immortality. Kwong’s mural is a fitting contribution to Calgary Chinatown, reminding viewers that each of us have an impact on the world based on the way we live our lives. We must be mindful of the legacy of this impact, as this contributes to how communities are built. The New Gallery interprets this mural as a representation of the resiliency and longevity of Calgary Chinatown, and a possible path forward, with the words Dao or Tao translating to mural’s title, The Way.
TNG gratefully acknowledges its home on the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region, including the Blackfoot Confederacy (Kainai, Piikani and Siksika), Métis Nation of Alberta Region III, Stoney Nakoda First Nation (Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley), and Tsuu T’ina First Nation. TNG would also like to acknowledge the many other First Nations, Métis and Inuit who have crossed this land for generations.