In partnership with the Ontario Science Centre, Nuit Blanche Toronto 2019 will feature Director X’s “Death of the Earth” exploring environmental destruction and climate change. The piece follows his 2016 Nuit Blanche monumental project “Death of the Sun.”

Toronto Transformed by Artists
Saturday, October 5, 2019

Toronto’s free all-night contemporary art event invites adventurous residents and visitors to take to the streets from sunset to sunrise. Experience Toronto transformed by hundreds of Canadian and international artists. One night only, all night long.

Nuit Blanche Toronto 2019 will feature two City-produced exhibitions and a major installation at Nathan Phillips Square:

  • The exhibition Queens and Kings of Scarborough, curated by Ashley McKenzie-Barnes (Toronto), will be sited in and around the Scarborough Centre neighbourhood.
  • The exhibition Creation : Destruction, curated by Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta (Toronto), will be located at the Fort York National Historic Site, Garrison Common and surrounding neighbourhoods.
  • Nathan Phillips Square will feature a large-scale installation created by New York-based artist, Daniel Arsham.

Queens and Kings of Scarborough

Curated by Ashley McKenzie-Barnes

A theatrical playground that challenges the constructs of systematic social marginalization, negotiation of self-identity and racial stereotype within a modern framework.  From film and sculpture to consumer advertising and media, Queens and Kings of Scarborough dismantles conventional and societal perceptions, flipping the script, and honouring Scarborough as a hotbed of culture.

Scarborough-born, Ashley McKenzie-Barnes is a full-time Creative Director, independent Curator and part-time Academic Professor at Humber College, with over a decade of integrated experience in the advertising, entertainment, corporate, and non-profit sectors. She has programmed exhibitions, creative collaborations and installations for companies such as Samsung, Manifesto Festival and Artscape, and is no stranger to executing within a variety of DIY spaces and traditional galleries to major institutions like the Art Gallery of Ontario

Creation : Destruction

Curated by Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta

All things reside on the borders of creation and destruction. Inspired by its geographical area, this exhibition will challenge our understanding of these seemingly contradictory concepts not in opposing terms but as extensions of each other, forces that both deplete and feed each other. There is nothing more primal, more essentially human, than the paradoxical relationship between creation and destruction. It is the essence not only of the natural world but our place in it, all of which can only be found somewhere in between creation and destruction.

Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta are the curatorial duo behind Art Spin. Since 2009 they have been activating decommissioned venues and unique public spaces to produce large-scale group exhibitions along with curated bicycle-led art tours to showcase a multi-disciplinary range of new programming in alternative sites, most notably the reanimation of Ontario Place’s West Island for in/future in 2016. At the heart of their curatorial practice is a passionate interest in pushing the possibilities of what constitutes public art through site-specific/site-responsive practices via ephemeral modes of presentation.

Daniel Arsham is a New York-based artist whose work explores the fields of fine art, architecture, performance, design and film. Arsham’s uchronic aesthetics revolve around his concept of fictional archaeology. Working in sculpture, architecture, drawing and film, he creates and crystallizes ambiguous in-between spaces or situations, and further stages what he refers to as future relics of the present. Always iconic, most of the objects that he turns into stone refer to the late 20th century or millennial era, when technological obsolescence unprecedentedly accelerated along with the digital de-materialization of our world. While the present, the future and the past poetically collide in his haunted yet playful visions between romanticism and pop art, Arsham also experiments with the timelessness of certain symbols and gestures across cultures.


The city of Toronto and its inhabitants are in a constant state of becoming. This progression follows many paths through the night of Nuit Blanche. The cycle of creation and destruction that simultaneously depletes and feeds, the elevation of the notable into a place of renown nobility, the challenge of finding inner calm and enlightenment in the midst of it all.

Underlined by the ever-present renewal of night into day, all are part of a continuum of experience and ideas. In a world that feels increasingly polarized, Nuit Blanche Toronto 2019 responds to the interconnected and often contradictory paradoxes of life in the changing city.

There are five ways to participate in Nuit Blanche Toronto:

  1. As an artist through the Open Call Project program.
  2. As an artist or artistic producer through the Independent Project program.
  3. As an artist through the Sponsor Projects program.
  4. As a volunteer for the event.
  5. As a sponsor of an art project or the event.

Open Call Project Program Information

  • The City of Toronto works with selected curators to commission a series of installations for their exhibition areas called Exhibition Projects.
  • In addition to the commissioned Exhibition Projects, curators select up to two Open Call Projects through the open call process.
  • Open Call Projects are selected for inclusion within an exhibition, and as such are located within an exhibition area.
  • Projects are selected by curators in response to the curatorial vision of their exhibitions
  • Toronto-based and Canadian-based artists, at any stage of their career, are strongly encouraged to apply to the Open Call Projects Program.
  • The Open Call program is also open to international artists.
  • Previous participation in Nuit Blanche Toronto is not essential.
  • Open Call Projects are funded and produced by the City of Toronto.
  • The City of Toronto works in collaboration with the artist to produce the project. Open Call projects receive an artist honorarium of $1,000 CAD and up to $10,000 CAD towards project and production expenses.

Open Call Project Eligibility

All applications are reviewed by Curators and City of Toronto staff against the criteria outlined in the Open Call Guidelines. All projects are selected based on artistic merit, project feasibility, and relation to the 2019 event theme, Continuum and the exhibition curatorial theme. Applicants should be aware that their participation in Nuit Blanche Toronto’s Open Call program is not automatic, solely on the basis of meeting the general eligibility requirements.

2019 Open Call Application and Guidelines

The Open Call application must be completed through an online web portal. It is essential that you read and understand the 2019 Open Call Projects Application Guidelines below before completing your application.

Important: The application form does not provide a “save” function. We recommend you prepare the answers in advance of starting the online application form.

The deadline to submit an Open Call application is Monday, February 4, 2019.

Open Call Application Guidelines – PDF

Open Call Application

Independent Project Program Information

  • Toronto artists, museums, galleries, cultural and educational institutions, neighbourhoods and BIAs are invited to submit their proposals to activate and transform the city at large as an Independent Project for Nuit Blanche Toronto.
  • Independent Projects are self-produced projects, and are responsible for their own staffing, security and other costs.
  • Independent Projects must secure their own venue. The City of Toronto can provide assistance to applicants without a confirmed location.
  • Independent Projects can be located anywhere within the city of Toronto.
  • Independent Projects are selected through an adjudication process by the City of Toronto and the Nuit Blanche Toronto Project Selection Committee.


Successful applicants to the Independent Projects Program will receive either:

Independent Projects Eligibility

Applicants should be Toronto-based professional artists, curators or organizations. All applications are juried against the criteria outlined in the Independent Project Guidelines. All projects are selected based on artistic merit, project feasibility, and relation to the 2019 event theme, Continuum. Applicants should be aware that their participation in Nuit Blanche Toronto’s Independent Project program is not automatic or solely on the basis of meeting the general eligibility requirements.

2019 Independent Projects Application and Guidelines

The Independent Projects application must be completed through an online web portal and it is essential that you read and understand the Guidelines before completing your application.

Important: The application form does not provide a “save” function. We recommend you prepare the answers in advance of starting the online application form.

The deadline to submit an Independent Projects application is Thursday, February 14, 2019.

Independent Projects Application Guidelines – PDF

Independent Projects Application

Addendum 1: Public Right of Way Case Study

Downtown Toronto Sessions

Tuesday, January 15
Hours: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Location: Metro Hall – Room 310

Thursday, January 24
Hours: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Location: Metro Hall – Room 310

Scarborough Sessions

Thursday, January 17
Hours: 2 to 4 p.m.
Location: Scarborough Civic Centre – Committee Room 2

Tuesday, January 22
Hours: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Location: Scarborough Civic Centre – Committee Room 2

Exhibition Projects are selected by Nuit Blanche Toronto curators by invitation only for inclusion in their exhibitions, in consultation with the City of Toronto. These artworks are commissioned or remounted specifically for Nuit Blanche Toronto as part of each exhibition’s curatorial theme.

Applicants to both the Open Call Program and the Independent Projects Program will have the opportunity to express interest in participating as a Sponsor Project on their applications.

If successful, applicants will produce their art project in collaboration with a sponsor organization, recognizing the support of the organization on all related marketing collateral.

  • Nuit Blanche Toronto provides organizations with direct access to Toronto’s diverse population and a millennial event audience of over one million.
  • Customized sponsorships are designed to meet organizational business and philanthropic objectives and budgets.
  • An investment in Nuit Blanche Toronto provides sponsors the opportunity to promote their brand and products and demonstrate their support for Toronto’s cultural community.
  • The City of Toronto is dedicated to building strong partnerships that benefit sponsors, the event and its audiences.

For more information on sponsorship and partnership opportunities, please contact:

Michael Brown
Sponsorship Manager

Nuit Blanche Toronto takes place on the Saturday night, from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., of the weekend before Canadian Thanksgiving.

Event dates for the following years:

Saturday, October 5, 2019
Saturday, October 3, 2020
Saturday, October 2, 2021

*Dates are subject to change.

Media Resources

For interview requests and media assistance, please contact: Justine Palinska at or 416-395-7318.


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