Public commission: Play Me, I'm Yours

In May 2012, the arts committee of the Toronto 2015 Pan/Parapan Am Games invited me to represent Dominica in a public art project called Play Me, I'm Yours. The idea is for selected artists who are from or descended from Pan Am countries to decorate a piano so that it reflects their heritage.

Vocalist Alysha Brilla plays my Commonwealth of Dominica piano in the Yorkville Parkette, July 2012.

41 artists have been chosen to participate. Once completed, these pianos will be left in public spaces throughout the Greater Toronto Area from July 10th until month's end. Mine was nestled in the heart of Yorkville.

I took this opportunity to honour my Kalinago heritage, as my maternal grandmother was from the reserve (Dominica is the only Caribbean island with an indigenous reserve) and I have always been proud of their resistance against Columbus.

We all worked with the good people at Robert Lowrey Piano Experts — who are fascinating in their love and knowledge of the instrument. The completed piece lists former Kalinago settlements stenciled on the front in oil sticks.