Heritage Plaque Marks Guild Park’s Art Legacy
By John Mason, President, Friends of Guild Park.
Guild Park & Gardens, atop the Scarborough Bluffs, is now home to the site’s first officially recognized heritage plaque.
Heritage Toronto recently installed its newest descriptive panel to commemorate the Guild of All Arts, Canada’s unique artists’ community that operated on the site from 1932 to about 1995.
The Guild of All Arts began as the life dream of Rosa and Spencer Clark, the philanthropists who owned the property at the time.
“The picturesque site inspired painters, potters, and others. Artisans lived and worked in [nearby] cabins and studios ,” states the Heritage Toronto plaque.
Due to public restrictions from Covid-19, the new landmark was informally unveiled by a few members from Friends of Guild Park, the volunteer group that launched the campaign for an official historical plaque at the 88-acre site.
All previous markers and plaques at Guild Park had been installed privately, without the benefit of rigorous research.
A special guest at the recent informal event was Canadian wood sculptor, Dorsey James, the only surviving artist from the Guild of All Arts era.
“I spent nine and a half years there,” said Dorsey, describing his career on-site as an artist-in-residence. “Carving images – from myths to legends from around the world – and enjoying every minute … [at] the Guild.”
Once the Covid restrictions are lifted, Guild Park, located at 201 Guildwood Pkwy., will host a special public event so everyone can celebrate the new plaque and mark the site’s past, present and future.
Visit www.facebook.com/guildpark for information about the official plaque unveiling. While online, be sure to check out the special series of virtual tours that bring Guild Park’s stories to social media. You can also get details by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.