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A Guide to the Art Installations at the Mississauga Festival of Trees

Updated: Aug 24, 2023

Photo: Michael Scholz

We’re proud to have hosted 15 art installations from a diverse group of very talented individuals this year at the 2022 Mississauga Festival of Trees.

These installations are not your everyday trees, but unique interpretations commissioned by established and emerging artists based off the themes of community, art, culture, and creativity. Did you visit? Which one is your favourite?

The Mississauga Festival of Trees ran from December 2nd to the 11th, and the art installations were on display throughout. We hope you enjoyed the variety of interactive installations, thoughtfully curated to elevate your experience.

Read on to learn more about the collection of art installations included in the Mississauga Festival of Trees.


Spirit of the Forest

Adrian Baker

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Spirit of the Forest draws inspiration from the lanterns that originated in Asia and evolved into a symbol of celebration worldwide. Illuminated lanterns display images of five trees which are native to Canada and particularly meaningful to Indigenous peoples. Spirit of the Forest demonstrates the interconnected nature of trees and their foundation of organisms, with the intent to influence humanity to foster a greater sense of community.


Joanne Feely DeGraaf

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Generations is an oak tree branch which has been illuminated and magnified to soar over us, composed of mostly upcycled materials. Viewers can walk through the piece, becoming an active part of the proverb “from tiny acorns come mighty oaks”. Generations embodies the power of intergenerational connections and the promise for future generations, echoed in its electroluminescent veins surging with life and branch adorned with illuminated acorns.

Reflection of Earth

Jasmine Cowan and Ebru Kur

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Reflection of Earth, a sculpture composed of recycled bricks, glass and steel, resembles a wishing well. As you peer into the soft blue below, you can see a wide open sky silhouetted with a canopy of trees. The image you see before you is a symbol of hope for a brighter more environmentally sustainable future. Reflection of Earth’s use of recycled materials demonstrates the connection between the natural world and the man-made, serving as a reminder that everything comes from nature.

Sunshade Canopy

Alyssa Scott

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Sunshade Canopy was born out of the delicate restorative nature of trees, plants and paper. It consists of paper banners printed with plants, leaves and grass, which Alyssa collected by hand near her home. Each banner meets the floor with a fragile decay, portraying the seasonality of nature. Sunshade Canopy illustrates our relationship with nature and expresses hope in cultivating a deeper connection with it.

A Secret Conversation

Andrew Cirtwill

Carly Franklin

Daniel Kerman

Photo: Stephen Uhraney

A Secret Conversation’s steel trees are home to marigold-dyed silk leaves, adorned on its extended branches. A network of glass mushrooms lives beneath them as if scattered on the forest floor. A Secret Conversation tells the story of the tight-knit community of trees, mushrooms and mycelium, continually in touch with one another.

The Tree Archive

Christine Dewancker

and Katie Strang

Photo: Sanborg Productions

The Tree Archive is a visual record of the ages of Toronto trees. A series of prints chronicle annual tree rings from a collection of locally sourced trees. The Tree Archive was inspired by the system of evaluating trees in Toronto, which determines their value based on their maturity. You can view the sample of trees used in woodpiles located on the exterior grounds of The Mississauga Festival of Trees.

Wish Tree

Asli Alin

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Wish Tree pays homage to a traditional Tengrism wishing ritual that Turkic tribes practice in their birthplace of Central Asia. Within this ritual, colourful fabrics are tied around the branches of trees considered to be sacred and wished upon. Those who practice believe that these trees' divine nature means their wishes will be fulfilled.


Chrissy Poitras and Kyle Topping

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Coalescence is a festive tree shaped by a collection of paper birds in flight. It's inspired by the symbolism that birds carry and their enduring presence within art. Each bird is hand-folded and decorated with a custom illustration. Coalescence is a celebration of Mississauga’s history and its ecological environment, inspired by regional birds.

Socotra Tree

Roda Medhat

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Socotra Tree is a 12-foot inflatable tree with the likeness of the Yemeni Socotra Tree. An ornate Kurdish textile is printed on the tree's vinyl material, covering its trunk. A mosaic inspired by traditional Asian mosaic patterns envelopes the tree's canopy, providing a beautiful sense of shelter and warmth. This is especially evident when the sun sets, and the Socotra Tree lights up in vivid colour.


Gabriel Arrache

Photo: Mike Scholz

Streeward is a tree fashioned from steel and aluminum. It serves as a multifaceted representation of Mississauga's history, diversity, and use of First Nations land. From leaves to trunk to base - each element of Streeward has been crafted to tell a story. It illustrates the enduring strength and creativity of the people of Mississauga, existing on the land of the Credit First Nations.

Forest Tent

Colleen Snell

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Forest Tent is an immersive sound installation, within a tent on the Festival's exterior grounds. It offers a moment to pause, reflect and take a deep breath. We live in a fast-paced world, often disconnected from the sense of calm we all need. Forest Tent’s exploration of nature and music encourages you to quiet your mind and tap into your inner tranquillity.

Unacquainted Acquaintances

Vridhhi Chaudhry

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Unacquainted Acquaintances uses embroidery to show gratitude to the animals that silently live among us - arthropods. Embroidered leaves are home to colourful insects, suspended from branches. The intent behind Unacquainted Acquaintances is to shed light on the suffering that insects endure, through pollution, habitat destruction and exploitation.

Christmas Tree Of Peace

Sidney Gendron (SawmillSid)

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Christmas Tree of Peace, also referred to as O:KWIRE OF SKEN:REN (Tree of Peace), acts as an introduction to the Mississauga Festival of Trees, situated as you walk in. Tree of Peace was created with the intent to ask spirits for blessings of peace and healing in difficult times. It symbolizes vitality and a sense of hope.

The Cypress

Sarvenaz Rayati

Photo: Sanborg Productions

The Cypress is a burst of vibrant colour, hanging like a pendulum from the ceiling. Inspired by the cypress tree, and the free-flowing nature of a woman's hair - The Cypress expresses freedom. It portrays the evolution of the feminine with the use of colour and shape, concluding in an illuminated spiritual state.

Squandered Knowledge

Richard A. Posa

Photo: Sanborg Productions

Squandered Knowledge was formed out of a slab from a 100-year-old maple tree. It was born out of the search for knowledge, amid the range of negative emotions that plague us all. Posa is keenly aware of the fact that fear, frustration and judgment hold us back. Squandered Knowledge is an expression of the lifelong pursuit of truth and resistance to these negative emotions.


Thank you to our artists for allowing us to showcase your beautiful installations!

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