Nuit Blanche Picks: Interactive and immersive exhibits, visually intriguing projects, sound and dance pieces, on-the-move work, and one-stop art hubs

What’s your strategy for Nuit Blanche? Because, believe us, you need one. Anyone who’s ever tried to attempt the festival knows that an element of coordination is required. We suggest making a game plan beforehand, and anyone who calls you a keener will be thanking you at three in the morning when they’re  happily gazing at a sparkly indoor light installation and receiving texts about being cold and stoned and unable to find any art. Below, our picks, separated into five categories: Interactive and immersive exhibits, visually intriguing projects, music and dance pieces, on-the-move work, and one-stop art hubs.

Interactive and Immersive Exhibits

416-788-9663, 2012, Geoffrey Pugen 
Pugen will recreate a subversive dance party from 1994 in this choreographed performance and installation piece. ZONE B: Toronto City Hall, 100 Queen Street West (Ramp at Chestnut Street and Armoury Street)

Postcards from the End / Dirty Loonie, 2012 / 2009 Sarah Beck 
Pose with one of these three postcards to commemorate your trip to the Museum of the End of the World. Not recommended for those of you on mushrooms. ZONE B: Toronto City Hall, underground parking garage, 100 Queen Street West (Accessible from entrance ramp on Bay Street. Wheelchair accessible via “SEAL” elevator on Nathan Phillips Square.)

Body Xerox, 2012, Simon Denny, Yngve Holen
This is basically a photocopier dance party. ZONE C: King Street East & Toronto Street

Moth Maze, 2012, Oliver Husain
Enter the labyrinth, and you’ll enter the lush forest world captured in this film installation. ZONE C: Green P Parking Lot, 87 Richmond Street East

Outsiders2012, 2012, Seeingred
Interact with the luminous figures that appear in Toronto for the first time. Do what they tell you, and help them on their journey. ZONE B: Toronto Eaton Centre, 220 Yonge Street (In the Urban Eatery)

AURA, Antonio Cunha, James Munro, Sajith Sabanadesan, Nicholas Sibbett, Matthew Suriano, Filip Tisler
We’re into pretty much anything that allows us to interact with a “glowing membrane.” This one will illuminate an alleyway. ZONE B: 55 Gould Street (Alleyway)

Constellations, Claro Cosco, Piffin Duvekot, Grey Muldoon, Matthew Jarvis Wall, Spark Design Collective, XXXX Collective 
Crawl through sensory tent pods! ZONE B: 15 King’s College Circle (North end of University College, west of Hart House), 416-946-3029

Paralandscape, GeoArt Collective
Remember those fun parachutes from elementary school that everyone would grab hold of? This is one of those, with GoogleEarth projections of different geographies. Will participants break into a rendition of “It’s a small world after all?” Things don’t stop here. ZONE B: Wychwood Theatre, 601 Christie Street

Museum of the Rapture, 2012 Douglas Coupland
It’s Douglas Coupland, so everyone will be talking about it. He’s creating a creepy maze in the city hall parking lot. Spooky! Scary! ZONE B: Toronto City Hall underground parking garage, 100 Queen Street West (Accessible from entrance ramp on Bay Street. Wheelchair accessible via “SEAL” elevator on Nathan Phillips Square.)

Visually Intriguing Projects

American Colour, 2011 – 2012, Joshua Bonnetta
A tribute to Kodachrome film, these 14 rolls of 16mm were the last ever developed, capturing a roadtrip from Kansas to the birthplace of Kodachrome in upstate New York. ZONE B: Toronto City Hall loading dock, 100 Queen Street West (Accessible from Chestnut Street at Armoury Street. Wheelchair accessible via City Hall Front Security desk.)

World Without Sun, 2012, Christine Davis
Projections based on Jacques Cousteau’s studies of underwater life forms. ZONE B: Nathan Phillips Square, 100 Queen Street West

All Night Convenience, 2012 Rhonda Weppler, Trevor Mahovsky
An homage to the corner store that’s a 300-square-foot lantern. ZONE B: Bay Adelaide Centre, 333 Bay Street (Between Bay and Yonge, south side of Temperance Street)

Beacon, 2012 Alison Norlen
A sculpture based on historic lighthouses. ZONE A: Brookfield Place, Allen Lambert Galleria, 181 Bay Street (South of Wellington Street West)

Dollar General Drive By, 2011, Tim Davis
A video installation comprised of slow drive-by filming of discount stores in New York State. ZONE A: Emily Street & King Street West (West of University Avenue)

Pair, 2012, Neil Campbell 
As you approach the sculpture, the shape of the objects themselves, and their relationship to the environment around them, will change. ZONE B: 361 University Avenue (Walkway between Osgoode Hall and the University Avenue Courthouse)

Smells Like Spirit, 2012, Hadley+Maxwell 
Roadies will load in a Nirvana concert. All night long. ZONE C: Elgin Theatre Loading Dock, 160 Victoria Street

Caverne St-Clair, John Shipman, Mani Mazinani, Veronica Clarke-Hanik 
This project imagines a historic 2012 church has been restored 18, 000 years from now. ZONE B: St. Matthew’s United Church, 729 St. Clair Avenue West

Cent une tueries de zombies, Michael Lane, Colin Geddes 
101 Zombie kills, looped all night long. ZONE A: TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King Street West, 416-599-8433

DRIFT: Transients, David Bouchard
Digital illuminations based on TTC data. ZONE B: TTC Subway Platform Screens Across Toronto, Yonge & Bloor

Fortification for Small Worlds, Emma Ravindran
Trees will be wrapped in depictions of a variety of ecosystems. ZONE B: St. Patricks Market Square Park, 238 Queen Street West (Access the park by using the alleyways on either side of 238 Queen Street West.), 416-660-0003

Ghosts / spectral sound system: ghosts of bay + front / Village 2.1.0, The Ghost Collective
A lost urban history of Toronto recreated through sound, video and floating sculpture. ZONE A: Royal Bank Plaza, South Lobby, 200 Bay Street ((Bay Street at Front Street))

Glow in the Park, Jaclyn Blumas, Robert Cram, Heretical Objects 
A visual solar system constructed in the park. ZONE B: Bickford Park, Grace Street & Harbord Street

Iv(A)N, afallenhorse, Calvin Winter
An interactive video installation exploring how words can objectify people. ZONE A: The Gladstone Hotel, Room 214, 1214 Queen Street West

Nests, Shannon Partridge
Illuminated, interwoven sculptures nestled in trees around Dufferin and Lansdowne. ZONE A: Bloor Street West, From Dufferin to Lansdowne

Passage to the Kingdom, Theo Pelmus, Ulysses Castellanos
This sounds really crazy: gold leaf, gelato sculptures, Baroque music…and more. Wha? All of these will be used to recreate rites of passage found in religions from around the world. ZONE B: Queen Street West & Soho Street,416-384-2946

Poplar Paradiso
This installation considers what would happen to the soul of our cities in nature reclaimed the urban landscape. ZONE B: The Stables at Casa Loma, 328 Walmer Road (Across from Casa Loma’s main entrance off Austin Terrace.)

Search, Marisa Hoicka, Johnny Forever
The artists will Google meaningful questions like “What am I doing with my life?” and project and explore what the internet has to say. ZONE A: gallerywest, 1172 Queen Street West, 416-913-7116

Wall Spray, Inman & Oxland, Glenn Nakagawa, Elicser Elliot
Dry-wallers and graffiti artists will build, and graffiti, a never-ending wall. ZONE A: Woolfit’s Art Supplies, 1153 Queen Street West

Quasar 2.0: Star Incubator, 2012, Jean Michel Crettaz,  Mark-David Hosale
We imagine this is what walking inside an alien nervous system would be like. To the Magic Schoolbus to find out! ZONE B: Toronto City Hall underground parking garage, 100 Queen Street West (Accessible from entrance ramp on Bay Street. Wheelchair accessible via “SEAL” elevator on Nathan Phillips Square.)

The Robotic Chair, Max Dean, Raffaello D’Andrea, Matt Donovan 
A kinetic sculpture, this chair can fall apart and put itself back together. The swooning might imitate how your legs feel by the end of the night. ZONE B: 111 Queen’s Park (Third floor), 416-586-8080

On-The-Move Work 

Flat Space, 2012, Peter Bowyer
Cargo bikes will transport 300 galvanized steel parts to the middle of Bay Street which will “arrive, assemble and disappear like a patch of eccentric mushrooms after a warm rain.” What? Okay, intrigued. ZONE B: Bay Street & Queen Street West

Constricycle Crew, 2012, Jefferson Campbell-Cooper
Construction machines built almost entirely from salvaged bicycles will pick up recycling throughout the night. ZONE B: Yonge Street & Queen Street West (This project is mobile. Look for the Constricycle Crew on Yonge Street, Queen Street West and Temperance Street.)

Mobile Narratives : Temporary Occupations, Michelle Liu 
Five words: Bike powered pancake grilling cart. ZONE B: Various Locations, Dundas Street West & Spadina (The project moves through the southern half of Zone B through out the night. It will make 8 stops, for about 1.5 hours each, starting in Old China Town(near city hall), looping around Bathurst, Bloor, Jarvis and Dundas.), 647-407-1162. Call to confirm location.

Dance and Sound Projects

Planes, 1968, Trisha Brown Dance Company
A restaging of an iconic dance piece in which dancers scale a wall against the backdrop of a 16 mm film. ZONE C: Dundee Place, 1 Adelaide Street East

Tremolo, 2012, Maeve BrennanRuth Ewan
Brennan is a classically-trained pianist who was overcome with anxiety every time she tried to perform. She’s challenging her fears and staging a series of live recitals throughout the night. ZONE C: Rainbow Cinema Market Square, 80 Front Street East

9 Beet Stretch, 2004, Leif Inge – Oslo, Norway
Expanding Beethoven’s 9th Symphony so it lasts 24 hours. ZONE B: Old City Hall, 60 Queen Street West

Forty-Part Motet, Janet Cardiff 
40 separately recorded choir voices are played through 40 speakers. ZONE B: Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre for Faith, Justice and the Arts, 427 Bloor Street West

Night Garden, Peggy Baker Dance Projects, Canada’s National Ballet School
Trios of dancers perform for 12 hours in a garden illuminated by sculptures. ZONE B: Betty Oliphant Theatre, 404 Jarvis Street

One Stop Shops

401 Richmond Built for ART
A huge number of artists will take over 401 Richmond with a variety of amazing projects. Good if you’re only up for one destination. ZONE B: 401 Richmond Street West

Fly By Night: Into the Wild
The Gladstone’s Nuit Blanche celebration will bring together a variety of artists working in several mediums. ZONE A: 1214 Queen Street West, 416-531-4635

Regent Park Arts & Cultural Centre: Our Lights Are On!
Parades, puppets, interactive music, dance and theatre will take over the recently-opened Regent Park Arts & Cultural Centre. ZONE C: 585 Dundas Street East, 416-392-1038 x49

Transformative Motion
An art path through the gardens of Spadina Museum. ZONE B: Spadina Museum, 285 Spadina Road Toronto, 416-392-6910

Telling Stories
From Vaudeville to choose your own adventure, The Drake Hotel will immerse its guests in art, and Flosstrodamus will play until 4 am. ZONE A: 1150 Queen St. W.

~ Haley Cullingham

1 Comment

  1. bearobrien1
    March 3, 2014

    The 1994 dance party sounds like it will be a lot of fun. I would love to be able to make it to one of these immersive exhibits some time. I always feel like I am missing out when I hear that these things are going on. http://www.officenational.com.au/shop/en/chrishumphrey/home

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