Katika Marczell (AKA Candy Press)









My name is Katika Marczell (she/her), and I am a muralist and interdisciplinary artist. I completed my (honours) BA at the University of Toronto and my MFA at York University. I am a recipient of a York Master’s Fellowship and the Canada Graduate Scholarship – Master’s (SSHRC). I have shown in Toronto, Montreal, at the Varley Art Gallery in Markham, and the Art Gallery of Peterborough. As a muralist, I have worked with Bell Box Murals, Kensington BIA, West Queen West BIA, Street Art Toronto, Mural Routes, The Personal Care Bank, as well as private clients. My murals can be found in and around Toronto and Etobicoke.

Over the last three years, I have been considering public spaces: who they are made for, who they acknowledge, the communities public works reside in, and how they affect people. Often children are not thought of in the design, planning, and architecture of city spaces. In my murals, I address this gap by making public art that is welcoming, fun, and humorous.  Work that makes children feel more engaged and acknowledged as important members of their own communities.

In reflecting on my own personal and family history, I recently realized that the reason I am passionate about engaging children in public spaces is that my childhood was awash with the fear of the outside. As the granddaughter of two Holocaust survivors and the child of a man who escaped communism in the early 80s, isolation and general mistrust of the outside world was a necessity for survival. I have personally experienced anti-Semitism, and fatphobic bullying, which made me cautious of others. Though this anxiety continues on into adulthood, I know I am not alone in this unease. The outside world can be scary. My fascination and work in public spaces is a direct reaction to this upbringing and fear. I realized that not only am I making public art for children. But I’m also making friends, silly, welcoming images in public spaces to take away some of the power that that fear holds.


Two birds, two snails, two fish, one turtle, caterpillar, firefly, moth, and a worm at Sherwood Community Centre

(This Traffic Box is located at Main Street and Sherwood Community Centre)

This fun and friendly mural shows a variety of happy creatures participating in activities that can be found at the Sherwood Community Centre. The animals and bugs are enjoying working out, swimming, skating, and reading. This mural encourages others to get out into the world, to welcome all peoples to the community centre.

Some other works of the artists: