The Art Cart

In 2010, Gallery Gachet and Oppenheimer Park (the Carnegie Centre Association) expanded their creative partnership to develop together the project, Art Cart. In collaboration, designs were created through community engagement and a final incredible art cart was built.

Art Cart is a mobile art gallery and vending cart for the communities of Gallery Gachet and Oppenheimer Park. The Art Cart is a vessel for artists to transport and sell their work, as well as a being a hub for curated exhibitions and projects, community workshops and public events. Art Cart seeks alternatives for “artist space”, and in its own way represents an act of creative survival and resistance. Developed in collaboration between Oppenheimer Park and Gallery Gachet, Art Cart aims to support artist exposure, creative exchange, and art sales. It can be unhinged from convention as it navigates the shifting possibilities for art in the local cultural realm – who makes it, who shows it, who sees it and who sells it.

This further strengthens the relationship between Gallery Gachet and Oppenheimer Park that took root 5 years ago when the first Oppenheimer Park Community Art Show took place at Gachet, which is now a yearly, celebrated Gachet exhibition. We believe that Oppenheimer Park and Gallery Gachet share common goals, interests and ideas; our mutual visions can help us work together to build a stronger Downtown Eastside arts community – one where artists have the opportunity to create work that is shown in a professional gallery environment and yet retains the heart and vibrancy of the local community.

The Art Cart concept expands this idea of facilitating the production, ideation and expansion of opportunity for artists who have been negatively affected by their economic and mental health situations. The Art Carts is free to roam into different neighbourhoods, allowing the DTES artists of Oppenheimer and Gachet to reach a wider and more diverse audience. We can publicise our exhibits/issues/ideas, get our voice out beyond our own back yard and really show the Vancouver public at large that the art being created in our local community is vital, worthy and warrants broad appreciation!

Dean Bennett developed the designs with input from the community and the cart was built by Toby’s Cycles Works. Original designs and concept was first created by Ali Lohan, and then presented by Ali Lohan/ Quin Martins at their art exhibit at the Carnegie Centre.

This project was made possible through the generous support of the City of Vancouver’s Great Beginnings Program, and The Community Arts Council of Vancouver (CACV).


One Comment