Witness powerful and awe-inspiring works of visual art unfold, as artists and muralists reimagine what a basketball court can look like. Ten courts throughout the Capital Region will be transformed like never before, breathing new life, new conversations, and new possibilities into these important public spaces.

Our first instalment of Outside the Lines: A Court Mural Project features Rachel Wada. Read on to learn more about Rachel and her amazing court design, freshly completed at Horner Park in Saanich!

Artist: Rachel Wada
Mural Location: Horner Park, District of Saanich
Instagram Handle: @rachelwada

Artist Statement

Concept: A dragon weaving across and throughout the basketball court. Its fluid body, sharp claws and wavy spine create a visually interesting composition that breaks up the court. Surrounding the dragon are thin, fluid shapes that almost resemble flames or smoke. Scattered throughout the composition are geometric sunbursts and fireworks. A solid shadow is cast beneath the dragon, giving the illusion that it is floating above the court.

Intention: Home to Canada’s first and oldest Chinatown, I wanted to celebrate the rich cultural history of the Chinese community in Greater Victoria with a contemporary and vibrant design that is engaging and culturally specific.
Generally depicted as a four-legged animal with a scaled, snakelike body, horns, claws, and large, demonic eyes, the “long” (Chinese Dragon) was considered the king of animals, and his image was appropriated by Chinese emperors as a sacred symbol of imperial power. The dragon is also a symbol of power, strength, and good luck for people who are worthy of it in East Asian culture. With the recent surge in Anti-Asian hate crimes during the COVID-19 pandemic, I wanted to empower and bolden Asian culture and identities, to showcase their strength and resilience, much like a dragon. Through a fun and eye-catching design, I hope to activate people within the community to recognize and develop a connection with the city’s Chinese community outside of the Chinatown core.