Prairie Melodies – Honens Piano

Repurposed Sherlock-Manning piano (# 122348), made in Clinton, Canada, 2017


Pianoscapes is Honens’ gift to Calgary for the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation. The project was inspired by the desire to enrich the community through providing access to music-making, and to encourage collaboration between business, music, and visual art. Five pianos were transformed with designs that represent local artists’ unique reflections of Canada.

I decorated an old school piano with the rhythms and patterns of Alberta, from ammonite fossils to flora and fauna such as grass, trout, bison and bears. Alberta roses are on the keyboard cover and Indigenous patterns line the keys. To commemorate Canada 150, National maple leaves are intertwining with Alberta aspen leaves. A colony of bees lives inside the piano.

All patterns are printed linocut on translucent paper. The prints were then pasted with a clear coat on the piano, which was treated with a basecoat of several colours.

All pianos were unveiled at the Festival. Afterwards, the impact and legacy of Canada 150 will continue as the pianos were placed in accessible community and public spaces across Calgary, and made available for free public programming.

The finished Prairie Melodies piano is back at its original location. The sandstone school building has been transformed into an arts hub, King Edward C-Space in Calgary.

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