Today, Mayor John Tory kicked off ArtworxTO: Toronto’s Year of Public Art 2021–2022, opening the first of several hubs across the city, as part of the year-long celebration of Toronto’s exceptional public art collection and the creative community behind it.
Mayor Tory was joined by Councillor Gary Crawford (Scarborough Southwest), Co-Chair of the Mayor’s External Advisory Committee for Toronto’s Year of Public Art at Cloverdale Common for the opening of the ArtworxTO Hub WEST.
ArtworxTO Hubs open today as spaces for artistic and community activity led by the next generation of curators, collectives and artists. Through exhibitions, activations, workshops and experiences, the hubs will amplify local artistic identities, recognize their global vibrancy, and empower creative communities.
Year-long hubs are located at Downsview Park, Scarborough Town Centre, Cloverdale Common and Union Station, and have partnered with Local Art Service Organizations: North York Arts, Scarborough Arts, Arts Etobicoke, Lakeshore Arts, East End Arts, Urban Arts, Neilson Park Creative Centre and Sketch. More information about the hubs is available here
ArtworxTO Hub NORTH, located in Downsview at 70 Canuck Ave., features ALL CITY SHINE, an exhibit curated by Danilo Deluxo McCallum to create space for Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian and BIPOC artists to shine collectively. ArtworxTO Hub North will also host exhibitions by Jane Street Speaks, North York Arts, Black Speculative Arts Movement and Zahra Siddiqui.
ArtworxTO Hub EAST, located at Scarborough Town Centre, 300 Borough Dr., features Scarborough: The Backbone, a dynamic celebration of the arts curated by The Spoken Soul Collective (Paulina O’Kieffe-Anthony, Dwayne Morgan, and Randell Adjei). ArtworxTO Hub EAST is also hosting workshops, programs and performances with Scarborough Arts.
ArtworxTO Hub WEST, located at Cloverdale Common, 250 The East Mall, features HOME(LAND), a multimedia exhibition series curated by Claudia Arana that examines how concepts of land and its different natural elements intersect with the fluid and shifting characteristics of identity, kinship, belonging and home. ArtworxTO Hub West will also offer digital arts experiences using virtual and augmented reality with Arts Etobicoke, and online conversations by Farrah Miranda with Lakeshore Arts.
ArtworxTO Hub SOUTH, located at Union Station, 61 Front St. W., will open on October 27. Curated by Maya Wilson-Sanchez, I am Land is a three-part exhibition series that explores the role of the artist as a chronicler.
ArtworxTO Pop-up Hubs
ArtworxTO Pop-up Hubs will showcase temporary exhibitions, projects and events throughout Toronto’s Year of Public Art 2021–2022 to highlight the importance of people and place making.
The ArtworxTO Pop-up Hub at Bayview Village, 2901 Bayview Ave., opens today with curator Raji Kaur Aujla’s chashm-e-bulbul, an exhibition that probes the erasure of Sikh grandmothers’ visibility from historical records and explores methodologies to tell their stories through oral traditions, Punjabi textile and folk embroidery.
The Collision Gallery ArtworxTO Pop-up Hub at 18 Wellington St W. also opens today with the Taking Space for Self Care in Urban Centres exhibit curated by Emma Steen, which highlights Black and Indigenous perspectives on care as methods of resistance and sovereignty.
These initial pop-up exhibitions, will be available until Friday, December 31.
ArtworxTO has partnered with Driftscape, a mobile-friendly website and app that allows users to identify public artworks and engage in self-guided walking tours that include media clips and artist interviews. Tours in each of Toronto’s 25 wards, or works located at multiple TTC stations are available here
Spotlight Emerging Artists Program
Artists with five years of experience or less are invited to submit a video, sharing their practice, journey and stories. Submissions will be accepted quarterly, and 52 emerging artists will be selected to be spotlighted — one per week during ArtworxTO.
Working closely with artists and Toronto’s arts institutions, ArtworxTO is delivering major public art projects and commissions across the city from fall 2021 to fall 2022. Supporting local artists and new artworks that reflect Toronto’s diversity, ArtworxTO is creating more opportunities for Torontonians to engage with art, as part of one of the largest arts and culture investments in the City’s history.
Grants provided by the City and Toronto Arts Council – and supported by corporate and government partners – will provide Toronto artists with more than $5 million to produce more than 350 new murals, installations, exhibitions, art events, performances and productions in 2021 and 2022. Funding has been provided to nearly 100 arts organizations, artists’ collectives, and Business Improvement Areas to create artwork and programs for ArtworxTO, such as community programs, film, live arts, projection-mapping, digital media, residencies, and mentorship opportunities. In total, more than 1,400 artists are involved in ArtworxTO projects.
The City will also provide further opportunities for artists and participants through 16 City-administered programs and initiatives, including the Public Art & Monuments Collection, StreetARToronto, Percent for Public Art Program, Cultural Hotspot, Nuit Blanche 2022, Toronto Sculpture Garden, ArtWorksTO, Indigenous Affairs Office, Business Improvement Area Streetscape Program, Cultural Centres & Galleries, Museums and Heritage Services, Toronto Archives Photograph Collection, Parks, Forestry and Recreation Community Art Programs, Toronto Public Library, Artist in Residence, and Monument Lab x ArtworxTO.
ArtworxTO is part of the City’s new 10-Year Public Art Strategy, which renews Toronto’s commitment to public art and celebrates the incredible public artwork in the city, while also working to address gaps in that collection, such as the under-representation of equity-deserving communities and their histories, as well as geographic areas of the city where there are fewer public art works. The strategy is available here
More information about ArtworxTO: Toronto’s Year of Public Art 2021–2022, including an interactive map of Toronto’s extensive collection of public art, is available here
ArtworxTO has been designed with guidance from Toronto Public Health to provide a safer environment for participants.
ArtworxTO thanks its sponsors, donors and media partners: QuadReal Property Group, the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund – a program of the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, administered by the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund Corporation; RBC Foundation, TD Ready Commitment, Power Corporation of Canada, Collecdev, Dream, Union Station, Metropia, Castlepoint Numa, KingSett Capital, Canada Lands Company, Northcrest Developments, Oxford Properties, OUTFRONT Media, Branded Cities, Bell Media, Bill Morneau & Nancy McCain Foundation, Weston Family Foundation, The Woodbridge Company Limited, EllisDon, The McLean Foundation, Goodmans LLP, Paul and Emma Bain, The Ouellette Family Foundation, Partners in Art; and The Toronto Star.
“ArtworxTO: Toronto’s Year of Public Art 2021-2022 is an opportunity for residents across the city to learn more about the vibrant and diverse public art in our city and the talented artists who have created it. This year-long initiative highlights the arts and culture sector’s critical contribution to Toronto’s economy and its role in rebuilding after the pandemic. I encourage people to visit these hubs throughout the year of public art.”
– Mayor John Tory
“Support for local artists across the city will enable Toronto’s diverse communities to share their stories through public art, while playing a crucial role in our recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
– Deputy Mayor Michael Thompson (Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic and Community Development Committee
“ArtworxTO is a city-wide invitation to re-engage in our communities, discover public art in all its forms, and strengthen Toronto’s international reputation as a creative city.”
– Councillor Gary Crawford (Scarborough Southwest), Co-Chair of the Mayor’s External Advisory Committee for the Year of Public Art
“ArtworxTO will delight, challenge, and invigorate Toronto’s cultural and economic recovery. It marks the beginning of a dynamic and inclusive new 10-year public art strategy that will create and cultivate art throughout our city.”
– Dr. Sara Diamond, Co-Chair of the Mayor’s External Advisory Committee for the Year of Public Art, and President Emerita of OCAD University
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.
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