Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that Nuit Blanche, an all night contemporary art event that turns the streets of Toronto into an art gallery, took place this weekend. Nuit Blanche is one of my absolute favourites events of the year, and when I heard that this year U of T would be one of the exhibit zones, I knew I couldn’t miss it.
My first stop was UTS (University of Toronto Schools) where Remembering the Future was hosted. This interactive fibre and video piece was created in part by the students of UTS, and had to deal with teenage fantasy and high school nostalgia.
My next stop was the Bata Shoe Museum, which may not technically be a part of U of T, but sits in the centre of campus. The Bata Shoe Museum featured EMPREINTES (above) and Shoes That Line The Lane (below). EMPREINTES was comprised of carbon casts of shoes, and carried messages by school children regarding their carbon footprint. Shoes That Line The Lane was one of my favourite pieces of the night, explored our strange custom of hanging shoes off power lines, as well as the memories and significance we associate with items of clothing.
From there I headed to OISE, which hosted Time of the Empress, a piece that explored the cycle of growth and decay with images of modern buidings being created and then destroyed.
From OISE I headed down the car free street to the ROM. One of my favourite things about Nuit Blanche is getting to explore the Toronto at night, since usually when I’m out at night I’m trying to get from point A to point B as quickly as possible.
Outside the ROM’s old planetarium was a new pop up planetarium that Zero Hour, a video piece which flipped north to south, showing astronomical images of the sourthern sky as well as catastrophic weather from the southern hemisphere.
After a relaxing stroll through Phillosopher’s Walk, I ended up at Hart House, where Muscle Memory was taking place. Muscle Memory was a fluid dance and drama performance piece, which explored how memories can affect our physical bodies, and how our bodies carry the weight of these memories.
My favourite part of this piece were the sticky notes that covered the walls. Each note had a memory written on it by a member of the audience.
My final destination was the UC quad, where my absolute favourite piece of the night was. I’ve Got Sunshine on a Cloudy Day was an illuminated text piece, which filled the quad with sunlight in the middle of the night. I loved how joyful and simple this piece was, and I really wish that they made it a permanent part of the quad.
Did you attend Nuit Blanche this year? What was your favourite part of it?