Nuit Blanche Toronto unveils 2019 program

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People are silhouetted by an art exhibit at the 2015 Nuit Blanche art festival in Toronto

The 14th annual Nuit Blanche Toronto will fill the city’s streets with nearly 90 contemporary art projects created by more than 300 local, national and international artists starting at 7 p.m. on Saturday, October 5. This year’s event will present two City of Toronto-produced, curated exhibitions in Scarborough and at Fort York, and a large-scale artist installation at Nathan Phillips Square will be presented under the event-wide theme, Continuum. 

Details about the full Nuit Blanche Toronto program are available below as well as online at 

The Nuit Blanche Toronto program for 2019 responds to the one event-wide curatorial theme of Continuum. The theme follows many paths during Nuit Blanche. Set against the back drop of the ever-present renewal of night into day, a continuum of experience and ideas is brought to light by the participating artists.

City-produced exhibitions 
Nineteen commissioned art projects will be presented as part of the three City-produced exhibitions. The first two are curated exhibitions of art works, while the third one described below, called Lunar Garden, is a single, massive installation.

Creation: Destruction curated by Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta (Toronto), is located in the Fort York neighbourhood. Inspired by its geographical area, this exhibition will challenge our understandings of creation and destruction. Artists include Max Dean and Jared Raab (Toronto), Kim Morgan (Halifax, Nova Scotia) and Kaitlyn Bourden (Bowmanville, Ontario), and Jonathan Schipper (Ellenville, New York), among many others.

Queens and Kings of Scarborough curated by Ashley McKenzie-Barnes (Toronto), is located around the Scarborough Centre neighbourhood. This exhibition confronts systems of social marginalization, self-identity negotiation, and racial stereotyping within a modern framework. Artists will include Ebony G. Patterson (Chicago), Kent Monkman (Toronto), Jordan Bennett (Terence Bay, Nova Scotia), Hatecopy (Toronto) and more.

Lunar Garden created by Daniel Arsham (New York) and sponsored by Shiseido, is an installation that will be located at Nathan Phillips Square. This large-scale project re-interprets a traditional Japanese Zen garden with colour, sculptural casts and a musical score by Charlotte Day Wilson (Toronto) offering a fully immersive experience.

Partner-produced and special projects
Created by individual artists, producers and organizations, and cultural and educational institutions, the partner-produced Independent Projects portion of Nuit Blanche features 48 projects celebrating the diversity of Toronto’s art communities. 

Fifteen major institutions across the city will feature art projects and exhibitions free to the public throughout the night of Nuit Blanche. The participating institutions are 401 Richmond, Aga Khan Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), Artscape Launchpad, Bata Shoe Museum, The Drake, East End Arts, The Gladstone, Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto (MOCA), OCAD University’s Onsite Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, The Power Plant, Toronto Biennial of Art, Toronto Sculpture Garden and Royal Ontario Museum (ROM). 

Art projects commissioned with partners and sponsors: HXOUSE, the Bentway, Cadillac Fairview – CF Toronto Eaton Centre, Oxford Properties-Scarborough Town Centre, Concord Adex, Toronto Arts Council, MLSE’s Toronto Raptors and the Ontario Science Centre bring new perspectives to familiar locations and institutions while emphasizing relevant and timely global issues.

• Life of the Earth (multimedia installation) by Director X is being created in partnership with the Ontario Science Centre. The installation shows the earth, as if seen from space, drastically changing from Pangaea to present time and to the future beyond humankind. This large-scale 360 projection will be on view alongside Death of the Sun, which was commissioned by Nuit Blanche Toronto in 2016. 

• Peace to the Past, Reach for the Future (sculpture) by Bryan Espiritu and Esmaa Mohamoud is being created in partnership with MLSE’s Toronto Raptors. The artists reflect on the team’s past and imagine its future while connecting to the diverse communities which continue to shape both artists and athletes. 

• On Thin Ice (sculptural installation) by Ghost Atelier is being created in partnership with HXOUSE for Yonge-Dundas Square. The installation brings the audience inside the deep crack in the glacier and serves as a physical reminder of the state of the planet, while emphasizing the importance of bearing witness. 

Nuit Talks
Now in its 10th year, Nuit Talks provides the opportunity to examine and showcase the art, artists and concepts involved in Nuit Blanche, featuring engaging talks, roundtable discussions and one-on-one interviews. Admission is free. This year’s Nuit Talks is presented in partnership with the University of Toronto Scarborough and the Doris McCarthy Gallery. 

The Nuit Talks program will include these presentations:
• Art, the City Builder: curators Layne Hinton, Rui Pimenta, with artists Francesca Chudnoff and Max Dean, September 18, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., The Bentway
• Art, the Mirror: Director X, September 25, 7 to 8 p.m., Royal Ontario Museum 
• Art the Maker: Ebony G. Patterson, October 2, 7 to 8 p.m., OCADU Auditorium
• Art, the Storyteller: RISE, Jalani Morgan, Emelie Chhangur, Mark V. Campbell, October 3 from 7 to 8 p.m., University of Toronto Scarborough 
• Art the Maker: Daniel Arsham, October 4 from 7 to 8 p.m. Art Gallery of Ontario
• Art, the Entrepreneur: Mark Stoddart, Durothethird, MEDIAH, Hatecopy, Rania El Mugammar on October 5 from 5 to 6:30 p.m., Scarborough Town Centre
• Art, the Opportunity: Ghost Atelier, Bekah Brown, October 10, 7 to 8 p.m., HXOUSE 

Nuit Connect
New this year is Nuit Connect, a residency and mentorship program in partnership with the University of Toronto Scarborough and Doris McCarthy Gallery. It’s an exchange of creative knowledge and experience between artists and institutions making an impact on Toronto communities. The artists-in-residence for 2019, RISE Edutainment, are a youth-led movement that provides opportunities and spaces for youth to develop artistically, professionally, personally, socially and spiritually.

Navigating the art by neighbourhood
Following a successful expansion outside the downtown core to Scarborough in 2018, Nuit Blanche returns to Scarborough for 2019 as well as activating new neighbourhoods outside the core such as East Danforth. As the City heats up for a Year of Public Art in 2021, Nuit Blanche will continue to expand outside the core. Nuit Blanche art projects will be clustered into nine easy-to-navigate neighbourhoods to make exploring the event more efficient. The nine Nuit Neighbourhoods are Scarborough, Don Mills, East Danforth, Bloor-Yorkville, Waterfront, Downtown, Sterling Road, West Queen West and Fort York. 

The full event map is available at

More information about participating artists, Nuit Talks and the complete event programming is available at

High resolution renderings of exhibition projects and images from previous editions of Nuit Blanche Toronto are available at


“Nuit Blanche Toronto creates significant artistic and cultural energy in our city. By making a wide spectrum of contemporary art accessible and enjoyable for everyone, it is as much a celebration of our diversity as it is a showcase for the creativity of our talented artists. I encourage Toronto residents from across the city to take part in this celebration of art.”
– Mayor John Tory

“Year after year, Nuit Blanche is a hugely successful event. I am especially proud that it will be expanded into Scarborough again following last year’s amazing turnout. Nuit Blanche is a true testament to the appetite for local art, culture and performances across the City of Toronto as well as to our outstanding arts programming.”
– Deputy Mayor Michael Thompson (Councillor Ward 21 Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic and Community Development Committee 

“Ontario is open for business and open for jobs. By investing in Nuit Blanche Toronto, our government is tapping into the economic potential of the tourism industry. As we develop Ontario’s new tourism strategy, we will continue to invest in festivals and events like Nuit Blanche Toronto, so we can help grow Ontario’s tourism sector and create lasting memories for Ontarians and tourists alike.”
– Lisa MacLeod, Ontario Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport

About Nuit Blanche Toronto 
Nuit Blanche Toronto is the city’s annual all-night celebration of contemporary art, produced by the City of Toronto in collaboration with Toronto’s arts community and funded by the Government of Ontario and Tourism Toronto. Since 2006, this award-winning event has featured almost 1,571 art installations by approximately 5,600 artists and has generated over $398 million in economic impact for Toronto. Information and updates are available at, on Facebook at, on Twitter at, on Instagram at The event hashtag is #nbTO19. 

Toronto is Canada’s largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of more than 2.9 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world’s most livable cities. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow on Twitter, on Instagram and on Facebook.

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