East Van Cross

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The Monument for East Vancouver, photographed in November 2014
This graffiti was photographed in September 1983 on one of the WWII-vintage pillboxes on Vancouver’s Point Grey Foreshore.

The East Van Cross is a symbol formed by the words East written vertically and Van written horizontally in capital letters, intersecting at the shared letter A, and forming the shape of a cross. Van is short for Vancouver, and the reference is to the city’s Eastern half, traditionally less wealthy and harder-edged.

The East Van Cross traditionally was the work of graffiti artists, said to express the "marginality and defiance" of East Vancouver.[1][2]

Starting in the 21st century, the symbol has been adopted as a city icon, most visibly expressed in the form of Monument for East Vancouver by artist Ken Lum, erected in 2010.[3] It has become possible to purchase clothing[4] and jewellery bearing the East Van Cross motif.[5]


  1. ^ "Ken Lum constructs icon to rule over East Vancouver". Vancouver Sun. 2009-11-25.
  2. ^ "East Van cross symbol has been around for decades, says Vancouver artist Ken Lum". Georgia Straight. 2011-07-12.
  3. ^ "Monument for East Vancouver". City of Vancouver.
  4. ^ "REPRESENT EAST VAN". Grubwear. 2015-02-12.
  5. ^ "STREET STYLE: East Van meets awesome for a cause". WestEnder. 2014-11-04.