Saturday, October 1, 2011

Toronto Nuit Blanche, 7pm-7am

All night tonight, Toronto hosts their 6th Scotiabank Nuit Blanche all around the city's downtown. As always, the city is divided in to 3 zones, each one organized by a different curator. This year, Zone A is curated by Candice Hopkins, Zone B by Shirley Madill, and Zone C by Nicholas Brown.

Toronto has been hosting the Nuit Blanche since 2006. Each year it grows bigger, with the most recent editions attracting around 1 million people each. This year there are over 130 art exhibitions, projects and events for everyone to check out.

Translated as 'Sleepless Night', Nuit Blanche originated in Paris, France in 2002 as a way to bring contemporary art to the masses in public spaces. Then in 2005, the Paris organizers invited the City of Toronto to join the six other European cities to produce similar all-night events. Toronto was the first North American city to replicate the Paris model,  followed by others including San Francisco, New York, Miami and Chicago. The Nuit blanche à Montréal was developed separately as part of Festival Montréal en lumière (Montreal Festival of Lights).

There has also been an unfortunate tendency for grumbling and complaining about the event both during and afterwards. Yes, there are long line-ups and not everything will be interesting for everyone. But that is the nature of the event and if you can accept it then it can be a great deal of fun.

It's best to walk, but if you plan to catch a lot then you should bring a bicycle. Some bars will be open until 4am.


2011 Event

Discover more than 130 free and accessible contemporary art projects within three zones. Each zone features a mixture of Exhibition Projects and Independent Projects. Scan through all projects by zone, click through the zone maps, review the alphabetical index of all projects, or take a look at the artist index. It's a lot of ground to cover!

Some works encourage an intimate, evocative encounter with art, while others will wow you with large-scale interactive spectacle.

As a centrepiece to the event, the City of Toronto has produced a special project for 2011. Visit Toronto City Hall for Flightpath Toronto, a soaring installation by Usman Haque and Natalie Jeremijenko.

Exhibition Projects produced by the City of Toronto

Under the direction of three curators, 45 temporary public art projects by local, national and international artists have been commissioned within three outdoor exhibitions. To encourage involvement by a wide range of Toronto artists – established and emerging – each exhibition includes projects selected by the curators through an Open Call process.

Independent Projects produced by the arts community

Toronto artists, cultural and educational institutions, museums, galleries and neighbourhoods open their doors all night long for this one evening. Admission is free and many Independent Projects are unique collaborations that offer one-of-a-kind experiences.

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