BigArtTO, a City-led ShowLoveTO initiative involving large-scale projections in each of the City of Toronto’s 25 wards starts tonight.
A city-wide temporary public art initiative, BigArtTO provides residents with opportunities to safely explore city neighbourhoods and support local businesses and artists. BigArtTO also sets the stage for ArtworxTO: Toronto’s Year of Public Art 2021–2022, which launches September 22.
Each of the BigArtTO program’s 29 sites will digitally project neighbourhood-specific customized artwork created by Toronto artists onto local buildings or landmarks. The program runs for 11 weeks, with two to three locations per week. Each projection will play on a loop for three hours, Wednesday through Saturday, providing free, temporary public art until November 27.
Residents will be able to explore artwork – while still respecting public health guidelines – across the city with free access to more than 350 hours of illuminated artworks.
Multiple partners have assisted with producing, curating and cross-promoting BigArtTO activations, including AVA Animation & Visuals Arts Inc., OCAD University, Black Artists’ Network in Dialogue, Nia Centre for the Arts, MakeRoom Inc., Akin Collective, Canadian Film Centre, Seneca College School of Creative Arts & Animation, Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival, Toronto Animated Image Society, InterAccess, Toronto Public Library, Aga Khan Museum, and York University.
The first week of programming, Wednesday September 15 to Saturday September 18, from 7:45 to 10:45 p.m., includes three activations around the city:
• Inside Out, Rexdale by Yasin Osman and Jamal Burger at Greenholme Junior Middle School, 10 Jamestown Cres. (Etobicoke North). Presented in partnership with Nia Centre for the Arts, with special thanks to the Toronto District School Board.
• Red Crowned Crane by Enna Kim at Parkdale Library, 1303 Queen St W. (Parkdale-High Park). Presented with special thanks to the Art Gallery of Ontario and Toronto Public Library.
• Dreamscapes by Courtney Dookwah at Lawrence Heights Community Centre, 5 Replin Rd. (Eglinton-Lawrence). Presented in partnership with OCAD University, with special thanks for Lawrence Heights Community Centre and Toronto Community Housing.
BigArtTO projections will be held outdoors with space for physical distancing. Each reel includes public health reminders, including prompts to wear masks and stay distanced from others.
The BigArtTO event schedule is available at BigArtTO.
BigArtTO is produced by the City of Toronto in association with Founding Sponsor American Express and with funding from the Government of Ontario. BigArtTO is sponsored by Toronto Regional Real Estate Board, Oxford Properties, Downtown AutoGroup and Equinix.
ShowLoveTO has been designed with guidance from Toronto Public Health to provide a safer environment for participants. ShowLoveTO, in association with Founding Sponsor American Express and in partnership with Destination Toronto, was launched September 14 to inspire local tourism, foster community engagement, support local businesses and encourage economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to BigArtTO, ShowLoveTO City-led initiatives this fall include ActiveArtsTO, CaféTO, DineTOgether, HistoricTO, StrollTO and more. Each initiative will be delivered with guidance from Toronto Public Health to provide a safer environment for participants.
More information about ShowLoveTO is available at ShowLoveTO.
ShowLoveTO is produced by the City of Toronto in association with Founding Sponsor American Express and in partnership with Destination Toronto. ShowLoveTO programs are funded by the Government of Ontario and sponsored by The Carpenters Union Local 27, Toronto Regional Real Estate Board, Oxford Properties, Downtown AutoGroup and Equinix. ShowLoveTO programs would not be possible without the support of OCAD University, AVA Animation & Visual Arts Inc. and media partners Bell Media and Rogers Sports and Media.
“Local businesses are at the heart of Toronto’s neighbourhoods and BigArtTO will help local businesses by drawing us back to main street areas. Let’s explore, shop and support local to keep Toronto the vibrant city we know and love and help our businesses and artists thrive again.”
– Mayor John Tory
“In addition to helping small main street businesses, BigArtTO will provide paid opportunities and exposure for Toronto artists, especially emerging and early-career creators, including artists from the BIPOC and 2SLGBTQ+ communities.”
– Deputy Mayor Michael Thompson (Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic and Community Development Committee
“American Express is proud to be the founding sponsor of ShowLoveTO and initiatives like BigArtTO that celebrate the vibrant culture of the city. Not only do Torontonians get an opportunity to celebrate local artists, but it’s a great way to get out and explore our city and support local businesses.
– Kerri-Ann Santaguida, Vice President and General Manager, Merchant Services, American Express Canada
Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit the City’s website or follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.