Nuit Blanche has spread from its roots in Europe’s capitals to cities all over the world, as art enthusiasts hit the streets for the free all-night art party.
A bit of Nuit Blanche Toronto history: Nuit Blanche made its Toronto debut in 2006, with 130 installations dotted around the city and focused in Yorkville, the Entertainment District and the Distillery. Since then, Toronto’s Nuit Blanche has become one of the largest and most successful events in the world, with last year’s event bringing in over a million visitors. Today Nuit Blanche is a cultural and economic powerhouse of an event that has generated over $300 million for the city.
This year’s theme, Continuum, explores the interconnectedness of life in the city, and the ever-advancing flow of time from night to day, day to night. Featuring works from over 300 local, national, and international artists, two curated exhibitions produced by the City of Toronto (in Scarborough and Fort York), and a full roster of performances and artists’ talks, Nuit Blanche Toronto 2019 promises to deliver.
This year’s exhibitions will be clustered in nine neighbourhoods around the city, so plan your route in advance in order to hit all of the hotspots. Many of the exhibits are located downtown within walking distance of some of the city’s top hotels, including the Anndore House. Visit the City of Toronto’s Nuit Blanche page for a complete list of all art projects and their locations. Subways will run all night long, as the TTC extends its regular all-night Blue Night Network to the entire system. If you are planning to visit exhibitions in Scarborough, good news – TTC access will be free from Scarborough Centre Station!
The environment will be a major theme of this year’s event, with thought-provoking pieces that examine the humankind’s impact on the planet and the urgent need for climate action. Some highlights:
- Life of the Earth by Toronto’s Director X is a large-scale projection of the earth as seen from space. The multimedia installation, created in partnership with the Ontario Science Centre, takes the viewer on a journey through time, from Pangaea to the Anthropocene to an Earth 100,000 years beyond humankind. It is the follow-up to the artists hugely popular “Life of the Earth” installation, which wowed crowds at Nuit Blanche 2016.
- Transformation by Nuit Blanche artists Fezz Stenton and Daniel Lanois is an interactive installation in the cathedral-esque MaRS atrium, located downtown at the intersection of College and University. The exhibit, which includes contributions by Canadian cultural icons including Margaret Atwood encourages viewers to examine their own behaviours and their impact on the earth as they wander through beautifully lit pathways of LED lights to an original musical score.