Call for Submissions – Big Pictures: Murals, Billboards + Urban Interventions Conference

Wilson School of Design at Kwantlen Polytechnic University

‘Giants’ by OSGEMEOS (Vancouver Biennale)

May 5 to 7, 2023
Wilson School of Design @KPU
Richmond, BC

Big Pictures: Murals, Billboards, and Urban Interventions is a conference of art and design taking place at the Wilson School of Design at KPU, Richmond, and in venues around Vancouver, BC from May 5–7, 2023.

What opportunities and interactions can be created through big pictures, subversions, or interventions? With keynote speakers, presentation panels, and digital projects, this conference aims to bring together multiple disciplinary approaches including advertising and graphic design; visual culture and criticism; architecture and urban studies; augmented and virtual reality; and public art practices. Presenters from a wide range of creative and academic focuses, as well as practitioners from related industries are invited to share work in this inclusive, dynamic environment.

Conference participants will have the opportunity to tour Vancouver murals, billboards and urban interventions, including works presented as part of Capture Photography Festival and Vancouver Mural Festival.

Keynote Speakers

Elizabeth Zvonar and Sandeep Johal will speak about their respective practices as part of our Opening Night on Friday, May 5.

‘French Fantasy’ by Elizabeth Zvonar (Vancouver’s Capture Photography Festival)

Submission Guidelines

We are seeking submissions for 300-word proposals presenting creative projects, research, and critique for our in-person panels. Each panel presentation will run approximately 10-15 minutes, with supplementary time for questions. Please submit using the form available on the Big Pictures website.

In addition, we welcome pre-recorded digital submissions of project-based work. These will be projected during the conference, as well as available for viewing on the Big Pictures website. Videos can be any length up to a maximum of five minutes. They can include text and/or audio — with closed captioning for any narration. Video can focus mainly on documenting projects, or take a more creative approach.

January 16, 2023
Submissions open

February 24, 2023
Deadline for proposals (Round 1)

March 24, 2023
Deadline for proposals (Round 2)

Potential Themes

  • Festivals, exhibitions, and inspiring interactivity
  • Decolonizing urban space, images and indigenization
  • Urban interventions and community building
  • Creating a sense of place, local voices and collaborative projects
  • Billboards, advertising, and imagery that sells
  • Screens, projections and transitory visuals
  • Heritage, personal narrative, collective memory
  • Media and augmented reality projects in the built environment
  • Architecture and unexpected imagery
  • Messages in neon, signage, and text installations
  • Living walls and immersive landscape
  • Placemaking through Play
  • Making data visible
  • Activating temporary and transitional public spaces

Registration and Early Bird Pricing

Eventbrite registration is now open for the conference, with Early Bird pricing available until March 30. The conference will be held in-person in Richmond and in Vancouver, BC.

For more information and to join our mailing list, please email:

Conference contacts: Erin Ashenhurst and Carley Hodgkinson, Faculty, Wilson School of Design @KPU

We at Kwantlen Polytechnic University respectfully acknowledge that we live, work and study in a region that overlaps with the unceded traditional and ancestral First Nations territories of the Musqueam, Katzie, Semiahmoo, Tsawwassen, Qayqayt, and Kwikwetlem; and with the lands of the Kwantlen First Nation, which gifted its name to this university.

Wilson School of Design @KPU
5600 Kwantlen Street, Richmond BC

Instagram @bigpictures_yvr

The Wilson School of Design is fully accessible.