Botanicus Art Ensemble is a thriving non-profit community arts group currently under the Art direction of Kit Tough and Lorraine Maltese based out of MacGregor Playground, an urban park in Toronto, Canada and continues to bring artists, artisans, actors, dancers, musicians, fashionistas, storytellers and gardeners together to create nature-inspired art with our neighbours. 


In 2003, when Kristen began an artist residency in the park, MacGregor Playground had a reputation as a deserted ‘crack park’. The idea was to reestablish the park as a safe space for all by animating it through art. With support from the Arts Councils, Toronto Parks Forestry & Recreation, the City Councilor’s office and multiple community partners, inch by inch over the years a significant metamorphosis has happened in this once-orphaned space. It has now become an oasis and community hub for Ward 18 residents and beyond.