The 2014 BAAF program features a collection of twelve distinct musical, theatrical and visual art projects presented on stage, paraded along the street, and nested within and during the larger BIG street fair. BAAF is programmed by curator and Bloordale resident Carla Garnet. The 2014 BAAF program features a collection of twelve distinct musical, theatrical and visual art projects presented on stage, paraded along the street, and nested within and during the larger BIG street fair. BAAF is programmed by curator and Bloordale resident Carla Garnet.
“Taken in individually or all together the 2014 BAAF’s multiple and integrated projects have community at their heart, in so far as they aim to create a safe and culturally charged urban streetscape, one where we may feel free to linger, to enjoy and to take part in, by bringing a little bit of the provisional, experimental and unexpectedly sweet even magical qualities of contemporary culture sometimes found in small theatres, music venues, artists studios and artist run centres to the BIG on Bloor Festival.”- Carla Garnet
To ensure you don’t miss anything each artist has produced a passport stamp – use it to stamp your festival program and check that you have found everything.
2014 Project Descriptions
2014 BAAF iteration of “small mercies” is presented by: Tom Dean, Jiva MacKay, Charlie Murray, Max Kelly and Yvonne Dean.
"small mercies", the summer iteration comprises a series of ‘outreach stations’ operated by kind-hearted volunteers, articulated by fire barrels and cooking stations, equipped with benches, and cool drinks. Attendants perform faithful to their roles handing out cold water and kind words. The participatory performance has community at its heart. Its mission is to make the large street fair feel like a safe and accessible place in which we were free to enjoy and to participate in challenging art forms. Small Mercies is a social sculpture. It arises from recognition of the need for kindness and comfort in everyday life, not just in the aftermath of disaster. It engages and arranges people. Participants congregate around cooking stations and music makers. The form remains, enlarging and diminishing, centered on food cooking and home made sounds. It holds all the complexity and richness and pathos of a social cluster, strangers and friends with some common purpose and focal point, a clustered audience before a spectacle and themselves a spectacle, figures joining and departing the cluster and flowing from one site to another.
* Mammalian Diving Reflex presents two projects for the 2014 BAAF: "Socialist* Games" and "Overhearing Conversations on your Back"
"Socialist* Games" is an exercise of shifting our asses into gear and engaging in some aggressive merriment. And we don't mean sitting around a table sipping cappuccinos and playing some pussy-ass board games. Socialist* Games calls on strangers to play with strangers in wave after wave of summer-camp style activities - minus the summer camp, plus the awkwardness, and double the hotness. So give your laptop the finger and get playing. By the end of the day you will be much more sweaty, much less of a stranger, and a much more of a socialist*.
For "Overhearing Conversations on your Back" (tent installation) BIG Festival goers are invited to lie down, close your eyes, and listen while the a group of teens and teen-adults, converse over your head about what they saw on youtube last night, who’s got problems with who, and speculations about who will win in an alley fight: Harry Potter or Katniss Everdeen? Founded in 1993, Mammalian Diving Reflex is a research-art atelier dedicated to investigating the social sphere, always on the lookout for contradictions to whip into aesthetically scintillating experiences. The theatre collective functions as a culture production workshop that creates site and social-specific performance events, theatre-based productions, gallery-based participatory installations, video products, art objects and theoretical texts. Mammalian’s body of work is interconnected, varied and vibrant, reflecting and evolving from their unique and growing body of knowledge and expertise on the use and function of culture. They recognize the social responsibility of art, and work to foster dialogue between audience members, between the audience and the material, and between the performers and the audience. In all its forms, the company’s practice dismantles barriers between individuals of all ages, cultural, economic and social backgrounds; collaboration with non-artists, offers both participatory opportunities.
2014 BAAF presenter Andrew Harwood will be presenting an iteration from her ongoing series of performances: “Mdme Zsa Zsa” gives "psychic readings" to the public as a kind of drag social relativist performance, saying "I tell people that I am 3% psychic and generally just give common sense advice - I make it pretty clear that I am not really psychic. Yet people tend to suspend their disbelief at this point and carry on as though this were an actual reading. This performance is more about making connection and is in measure social experiment, unconventional therapy and sometimes confessional." Paul Petro Contemporary Art in Toronto represents Andrew Harwood. He holds and MFA from the University of Manitoba and is a graduate of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. Over the years he has held a variety of positions in artist-run centres including A Space, Toronto and is a past general manager of C Magazine. His recent exhibitions include Séancé at Platform Centre for Digital and Media Arts and The Bob McLobster Show at The Edge, both in Winnipeg.
2014 BAAF presenter Emily Gove is a Toronto-based artist working in various mediums including performance, craft, photography and video. Her recent work has included embroidery, makeover stations, and hosting interactive live dating shows and bingo nights. Emily has participated in exhibitions at Gallery TPW, Board of Directors and Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Centre, among others, and has worked as an educator and programmer at Oakville Galleries, Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography and the Design Exchange. She holds an MFA from York University (2009) and a BA from the University of Toronto (2006). For the 2014 BAAF "Total Eclipse of the Heart" a participatory project pairing live participants with karaoke videos created from found YouTube footage the project will take the form of a private karaoke booth created in the space of a busy outdoor festival. Karaoke singers in public spaces are invited to perform along with bloggers who have used web-cams to film themselves performing alone in the private space of their bedrooms. <http://emilygove.com/archive>
2014 BAAF presenter Andrew Owen A01 is a visual artist and creative producer who has studied, lived, worked and exhibited internationally in Korea, Japan and the Republic of China for more than a decade as well as eight years in Vancouver. A01 is perhaps best known for the large-scale, photo-based “unofficial public art” (street art) installations known as Photo-cubic Tableaux, which are posted widely across Canada. For the 2014 BAAF A 01 will ask festival-goers to collaborate in the making of "United Diversities". These works derive from an interactive and relational program, which involves hands on access to taking and posing for digital photographs, digital printing and collage.
A01′s artistic practice employs two opposing strategies: subtractive processes from what exists, a creative absence, less from more; and, cumulative processes, assembling multiplicity of images into unstable composite hybrid amalgams (as playful political critiques of materialism, and the dangers of technical- and ego-driven representation).
2014 BAAF presenter Melanie Lowe is a Toronto‐based artist originally from Halifax, Nova Scotia. Lowe received a Bachelor of Design from NSCAD University in 2001 and completed her MFA at York University in 2009. She has exhibited works in Toronto, Montréal, Halifax, Dawson City and Vancouver. Through video, installation and the organization of ephemeral events, my art practice seeks to highlight the fleeting quality of the visual and how we relate to all living creatures in contemporary life. Recent works draw from and subtly play with the idea of the ephemeral and the evocation of the ‘event’ to create experiences of connective potential. For the 2014 BAAF Lowe is creating "it loves to happen (silver lining)" an outdoor installation where visitors are invited to enter a constructed square space made of white iridescent strips in curtain form, approximately 8 feet high. The curtain is somewhat thick and surrounds those who enter into a comforting safe space for contemplation and experience. The inside curtain will be made up of silver strips, a lining. From the exterior the space is square, while the inside is round. In terms of the participatory nature of this project, visitors to this space within a space will be invited to collaborate on a silver braided rope created from streamers in the silver curtain. Over time, this rope will get longer and will slowly wrap around the space and alter the exterior of the installation. Participants will also receive a bracelet in the same silver material as a small token of experience. http://melanielowe.tumblr.com/archive
2014 BAAF presenters, Julius Poncelet Manapul and Juliet Manapul, project; “Cabinet of Queeriosities” consists of butterflies from paper that will take over their tent. This activity will participatory. In words, festivalgoers can take part of in constructing the growing butterfly installation that will cover the tent with white branches hanging from its roof. There will be Queeriosities comprising collected butterflies incused in Cloche Glass (Bell Glass) and framed from shadow boxes. The contrast between the collected insects versus the free-formed installations creates a sense of push and pull with the insects representing "the Other", "the Collected", "the Queeriosities", "the Colonized", "the Hybrid", "the Transformation", "the Color Queer Gaze", and "the Exotification". The theme color of the whole look is WHITE / the WHITE WASHED, here the butterfly will be "the focal point" in "the white cube".
Julius Poncelet Manapul was born in the City of Manila, Philippines. He immigrated to Toronto, Canada in 1990 where he studied Fine Arts at the Ontario College of Art and Design University graduating with a BFA in 2009. He then took one year of residency at Toronto School of Art in 2011. Julius attended the University of Toronto for his Masters of Visual Studies in 2011-2013. Julius cuts to create new Hybrid imaginaries and the unattainable utopian narratives of the imagined Queer happy endings, that reflect his own struggles in religious beliefs growing up as a gay young man in the Philippines and Canada. All in all placing questions in his coming out process and his own racial melancholia.
Veronica Abrenica is a Maple Ontario-based multidisciplinary artist with a focus in performative work. Her pieces stem from social settings, which she construes through a participatory platform, opening up a dialogue between the artist and the larger audience. In her current practice, she is re-defined as an artist-researcher exploring a range of topics within communities to establish a sense of collective consciousness. Aside from her performative work, the OACD-U graduate has experience in the realms of video, sound, installation and wearable technology not to mention her role as the founder and facilitator of the Performance Art Collective. <http://veronicaabrenica.com/> Abrenica will be presenting "Artist Researcher" as part of this year’s BAAF. Her community arts project explores the performative/participatory process that reveals itself in the manner of data collection. Festivalgoers/participants are asked a general quantitative question, which then determines the coloured questionnaire they are given to fill out. Questions which ask them to think about where they are and maybe why they’ve come out are asked. For instance, the main question is: How often do you use public space on a leisurely basis? (Very Rarely- 0-4 hrs. a week, Rarely- 5-8 hrs. /week, Sometimes 9-12 hrs. /week, Often 13-16 hrs. /week, Very Often 17 + hrs. /week) other questions that appear on questionnaire are: -- Circle the degree to which you feel comfortable using public spaces? (1- uncomfortable, 2, 3- neutral, 4, 5- comfortable) -- Do you believe festivals provide a successful platform in opening up these public spaces? (yes/no, please explain). The participant is encouraged to read other participant's responses while enjoying a complimentary cookie.
"Boner Kill" is both the title of this 2014 BAAF project and the name of the young women’s empowerment group. "Boner Kill" is focused on educating and building awareness about issues related to gender nonconformity through shared non-hierarchal creativity, education, awareness and organization will host a conscience raising awareness and support circle as way to open up and strengthen a dialogue between young women and girls attending the BAAF who are interested in working on equity issues related to gender, racial, social, and economic justice. Their aim is to empower and help young women and girls own their voices; young women who have been traditionally marginalized, disenfranchised and not engaged in understanding our generational challenges. Their mission is to empower self-identified females in the hopes that their voices may be heard. "Boner Kill" offers festival goers a chance to take part in games and group discussions under their BAAF decorated street tent at their table opening up their concerns and issues to in a playful way to those who would like to join in and consciousness raise.
2014 BAAF presenters "Tough Guy Mountain" is an aesthetic corporation that is interested in you!
Presenting "PopUp Office" an exciting presentation of a business environment as seen through the eyes of innovative creators. A cubicle space combined with an art installation combined with a choose your own adventure story, Tough Guy Mountain's "PopUp Office" is bound to have something for everyone.
Tough Guy Mountain’s “Pop-Up Office/Open House” was on display most recently as part of the Toronto Design Exchange’s Office Design Festival. TGM opened its doors at Narwhal Gallery to allow designers a first-hand glance at the freshest perspectives on office design and office culture. TGM showed off its "Live/Work Intern Cubicles", "Executive Lounge", "Senior Partners Telepresence Suite", "Gift Shop", "Window Display" and two new pieces of software: “Digital Intern” and “Social Media Audience Processing Booth”.
For the 2014 BAAF the MUSIC GALLERY is presenting a stage program with performances by: Nhapitapi and Mas Aya and sharing their tent with special guests Weird Canada/Wyrd Distro, a non-profit distribution service for emerging, experimental Canadian music. <http://distro.weirdcanada.com/> Nhapitapi is a Toronto based Zimbabwean Music Band, who specialize in rich old musical and dance traditions from Southern Africa. Over the last 6 years they have performed at International Music Festivals (e.g. Afrofest, Zimfest, Carrasauga, Nhemamusasa North, Bana Y Africa among others), community centres, schools, major music venues across Turtle Island (Canada and the US). Nhapitapi music draws on the Mbira, an old spiritual instrument that has been played in Southern Africa for hundreds of years. Typically, Nhapitapi starts with the sound of three interlocking Mbiras both energizing and healing. Upon the Mbiras they stack up vocals, shakers, hand drum, drum set, bass and lead guitars, producing a unique brand of Chimurenga Sound (Liberation Sound). The effect is magical and invigorating; when the time is right they throw in swell energetic dances to complete the party. Many have found the music to have a universal appeal both to those who know it well, and to people who have never heard Chimurenga music.
Mas Aya is Brandon Valdivia's solo project from Toronto, Canada. He is also involved in Not the Wind, Not the Flag, and Pachamama. "Pockets" is out on TOMATURJ/manufacture errata. "Kairos" is his new release on Healing Power Records. The MUSIC GALLERY is a center for promoting and presenting innovation and experimentation in all forms of music, and for encouraging cross-pollination between genres, disciplines and audience. Founded in 1976 by Peter Anson and Al Mattes of the free-improvising group, CCMC.
Dyan Marie's 2014 BAFF "this SHARE THIS" with Ann O'Callaghan, Derek Liddington, Eldon Garnet, Jon Sasaki, Lois Andison, Monica Tap, Richard Mongiat, Sandra Brewster and 1000 others is a gesture to mark the redevelopment of the Bloordale's streetscape while acknowledging Toronto’s road rage, transportation conflict and the need for traffic calming. THIS is a public drawing project created on white backpacks edged with a reflective safety banner. Festival goes colour in the back-pack messages to SHARE BLOORDALE, then wear and keep them. Free.
Dyan Marie is an early innovator in the field of digital imagery. She works in photography, text, sculpture and projects that respond to urban situations with public art, curating, walking systems, publications, banner projects, community initiatives, festivals and poetry projects. A founder of C Magazine, Cold City Gallery, Walk Here, Dupont Projects, BIG: Bloor Improvement Group and the BIG On Bloor Festival, she is the recipient of a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal and the City Soul award from the Canadian Urban Institute among others. Recent works have also included poetry and performance in diverse and unlikely public locations.
Curator Carla Garnet holds and AOCAD from the Ontario College of Art and Design and an MA in Art History from York University. Currently the director/curator of the 2014 BIG Alternative Art Festival/The Art of Participation Project Garnet worked as in-house curator at the Art Gallery of Peterborough (2010-2013) and as guest curator at Gallery Stratford (2009-2010). As independent curator (1997-2010) and as the founder and director of Garnet Press Gallery (1984-97) she supported contemporary Canadian artists and culture through a variety of shows and initiatives examining the politics of aesthetics. She has curated and produced publications and touring shows featuring Robert Houle, Suzy Lake (with Matthew Brower), Allyson Mitchell, Sharon Switzer, as well as developing and producing the critically lauded Hole group shows: Drowning Ophelia (2010), Warm Ice (2010-11) Streaming Alterity with Pamela Edmonds (2012) and Flowers and Photography (2012-13).
Support This year’s BAAF: BIG Alternative Art Festival / The Art of Participation Project, is produced with the support of the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council and BIG: Bloor Improvement Group
Past Festival Feature Cultural Projects and Events
July 20 and 21, 2012
Bloor Street, various locations between Dufferin and Lansdowne on Bloor Street and in the Tennis Courts
22 Institution, Organizations and Collectives bring their programming to the street at the BIG On Bloor Festival July 20 and 21, 2012 including: The Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Arts, Centennial College, Canadian Textiles Museum, Canadian Stage, Toronto New School of Writing, Toronto Business Improvement Association,Toronto Botanical Garden, Toronto Public Library, The Ontario College of Art and Design University, The Ontario Science Centre and others.
Artist IAINBAXTER& presents “& To The Sky” floating sculptures made of helium bubbles in conjunction with works currently on view at the AGO (Art Gallery of Ontario) entitled IAINBAXTER&: Works 1958-2011. IAINBAXTER& will be at the festival to discuss his work &.
Bloordale BIA invites you to colour in a Bloordale t-shirt and it’s yours to keep for free. A Business Improvement Area (BIA) is an association of commercial property owners and tenants within a defined area who work in partnership with the City to create thriving, competitive, and safe business areas. We welcome festival-goers to the Bloordale BIA in this festival event that celebrates our community, Bloor Street and the City of Toronto.
Canadian Stage. A Midsummer Night’s Dream Photo Booth. Get dramatic and play dress-up at the Canadian Stage photo booth. Pick from the most outrageous, fun, and fancy costumes in our theatre wardrobe, then pose for a photo with your friends and family. Plus learn more about the Canadian Stage presentation of a A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Shakespeare in High Park June 26 – September 2, 2012. Pay-what-you-can at the High Park Amphitheatre. https://www.canadianstage.com/shakespeare
Dress up in period costume on Sunday and have your photo taken and sent to your e-mail address.
Centennial College “Make Your Mark”. Life drawing for all ages, all abilities. Release your inner artist. We supply the model, the materials, and the fun. You supply the curiosity, spirit and talent. Stick figure drawings welcome. Put together by David McClyment, professional artist and Co-ordinator of the Fine Arts Studio Program, Centennial College.
Toronto Botanical Garden helps launch The Toronto Garden Project, and invites you to join in. Simply draw a flower that is meaningful to you—one that marks a birthday, a passing, a party, a park, a mother’s day, an anniversary, a tragedy, a success–or any other occasion when we share flowers. Selected flower drawings will become part of a permanent “garden” in stainless steel, embedded in the Bloor Street sidewalk.
Celebrate flowers at the height of their season with the TBG:
Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Arts invites everyone to reshape a 24-foot line of clay (weighing literally one ton) into their own creation with the help of ceramic artists working side-by-side with festival-goers of all ages. This two-day family festival event encourages everyone to explore creating in clay – add, change, build something – a tower, a bird, a design, a mud cake, a road with cars, a pinch bowl, a face… installed together on a 24 foot x 30 inch table platform this become an exhibition and its own world. On the closing of this event – we invite people to take away clay – free.
The Textile Museum of Canada invites you to sew, glue, draw, knit together material to make your own flag. Explore ideas about flags with Richard Mongiat and offer him suggestions and ideas for a Bloordale flag.
Ontario College of Art and Design University – Being asked so many times, “Why can’t you paint pretty pictures?” three artists toy with the notion of what their ‘ugly’ work would look like in ‘grandmother’s house’.
Ontario Science Centre looks into the face of your future with an aging machine. On stage we educates and amaze with science experiments, tricks and feats of daring.
The Art Of The Danforth (AoD) is a free, multi-disciplinary, public art experiment that unleashes both large and small site-specific art projects into the community and lets them mix, mingle, and transform on the streets. Our BIG on Bloor table will showcase of the characteristic interactive artistry featured at AOD’s recent 22 day-long event held in east Toronto, transforming the table into a pavilion for people on Bloor to interact with their neighbors on the Danforth.
David Anderson and Clay and Paper Theatre has the Day of Delight meet the Night of Dread in Bloordale at 1242 Bloor Street’s new Can Opener Gallery.
Toronto New School of Writing offers “Acts of Poetry” with Amy Corner, Ben Nolan, Beatriz Hausner, Book Thug, Dale Smith, Daisuke Takeya, Dyan Marie, Eldon Garnet, Fenn Stewart, Hoa Nguyen, Jay MillAr, Jenny Sampirisi, Jerry McGrath, John Stout, JP King, Liz Howard, Louise Bak, Mat Laporte, Nancy Viva Davis Halifax, Norman Cristofoli, Paula Eisenstein, Paola Poletto, RM Vaughan, Shannon Maguire and many others. This participatory poetry project invites poets and people at the Big on Bloor Festival to contribute by adding their words to large-scale poetry panels.
Toronto Public Libraries, story-telling on Saturday organized by the Gladstone Public Library.
For more than 20 years, TransCultural Exchange has been uniting the world through art and will do so again at Toronto’s BIG On Bloor festival. To mark the 10th anniversary of its unprecedented “Coaster Project,* for which 99+ artists staged 99+ exhibitions throughout the world and then gave the over 10,000 artworks away for free, TransCultural Exchange is inviting the original artists, newcomers and festival-goers to make, contribute and take-away an art work. After all, the best things in life are free. * http://www.transculturalexchange.org/coasterproject/index_fr.htmCan’t be there? You can still participatehttp://www.transculturalexchange.org/coasterproject/2012project.html
Join the Toronto Zoo for some WILD animal encounters and educational artifacts. Don’t forget your camera because the Zoo Mascot Explorer BearTM will be on hand for the fun!
Bloor Serves. A one-stop location to find out about the BIG area Bloor Street including: service providers, community groups and initiatives, BIAs and local institutions. We have information you want to know about in our - yes in my backyard community - including opportunities to get involved. Bloor Serves Festival Projects include:
South Asian Women’s Centre is at the festival with a line up of traditional South Asian offerings – don’t miss these exciting demonstrations and learn Indian dance steps, how to wear a sari, amazing South Asian herbal cures, and Rangoli or decorating the floor with colours for festivals. Also South Asian Women’s Centre offers hand sewn item for sale and traditional henna decorations. All found at the Bloor Serves table on Saturday.
Alliance of Portuguese Clubs and Associations of Toronto (ACAPO) brings tradition Portuguese dance, crafts and food.
Gallery 44 is sending out photographers to see the BIG on Bloor Festival through the lens of photo-based artists. We invite you to check the BIG On Bloor Flicker site in September to explore the images of Marvin Antonio, Phillipa Croft and Ian Willms and others.
“The BIG on Bloor festival is one of Canada’s most original festivals and this year it will show case some of Canada’s most important cultural institutions. As both the local Councillor and a resident, I’m proud to be involved in this project. I encourage you to support and enjoy the festival and look forward to seeing you there”. - Ana Bailão, Councillor for Ward 18
Culture Works is located for easy access on Toronto’s main Bloor Street in the vibrant Bloordale neighbourhood. We have direct entrance from both the Dufferin and Lansdowne subway stations.
Culture Works is curated by Dyan Marie, contact:firstname.lastname@example.org, 416.539.8129
July 22 & 23, 2011
Play-ground, Bloor Street at Dufferin Ave. Toronto
The Responding Festival was a month long project by artists, designers, architects, poets, community groups, residents and volunteers and is a feature event of the BIG On Bloor Festival July 21/22, 2011. Please make Bloor and Dufferin in Toronto a destination for a summer walk, drop by often to see what is evolving and to participate.
The School playground directly edges Bloor Street but is separated by a 12 foot high chain-link barrier fence. Last summer we opened the playground area of the school and offered it as a Bloor Street public space. We will transform the empty space into a public art environment, a collision of art and architecture, performance, poetry, landscape, discussions and playgrounds made by artists and architects, cultural collectives and community participants. The intention is to make a non-stop swirl of activity, a site for evolving experimental forms and new ways of creating in a shared place that responds to the city, the community, each other and being here now.
Responding actively marks the schoolground site for designation as an on-going public space when Kent School closes in June, 2012. The project is an effort to claim the corner of Bloor and Dufferin and safeguard for community use in forth-coming development proposals.
Responding to suicides and summer heat
To do-gooders and never-do-wells
And the woman peeing in the alleyway
— she looks up and says she loves me
Responding to the man with a side-ways smile
Building castles on street corners with city planning in his pocket
Responding to neighbours yelling at each other,
themselves and people that don’t exist
Responding to living in a fever and in art and in the smoke of cigarettes
Responding to — not another “hard day’s night”.
Responding to the intersections of
Building materials, each other and Bloordale
Responding produced by Dyan Marie. More information: email@example.com, 416.539.8129