Sunday, October 04, 2009

Nuit Blanche - 2009

Toronto's fourth annual Scotiabank Nuit Blanche engaged audiences in a massive participatory celebration of contemporary art. Building on the success of past event's interactive art projects, the concept of audience participation was taken to a whole new level. The public literally became the art they had ventured out all night to see. New interactive tools including the Night Navigator iPhone/Blackberry app and My Night itinerary encouraged everyone to share pictures and schedules, tweet, text and talk to each other as they explored the city well into the wee hours of the morning.

My evening started At Dundas Square! Ground zero for Zone A

The evening starts by firing up my trusty Nuit Blanche Night Navigator on my iphone which thanks to the festival allowed free access to the city wifi network! Walk to and from maps and exhibition explanations were available in all three zones! I worked Zone A last night. After visiting each installation I was also able to blog my experience and rate the piece so that others could see my comments and recommendations!
If anything technology was the centerpiece of the evening!

Even the ground found decoration!

First stop, the Rabbit Balloon by Jeff Koons! Moved into the Eaton Centre due to weather concerns!

Here is a video of the Rabbit found on youtube!

Beautiful Light: 4 LETTER WORD MACHINE, 2009
D. A. Therrien - Phoenix, AZ, USA
Light Installation
Suspended 65 metres in the air between the Viljo Revell-designed Toronto City Hall towers, the four 7m square alphanumeric quartz lamp arrays will display codes, DNA sequences and elemental words. With each of the four "characters" consisting of 16 light segments, the machine is capable of displaying nearly 4.94 billion distinct graphic combinations, facilitating the expression of any word in any language. Automated code sequences will run between live performance times.
Since 1984, D.A. Therrien has been creating large-scale spectacles as rituals of technology utilizing machines, computers, information displays, high intensity light, robotics and live electricity in complex interactions with human performers/operators. His performances in Europe, Asia and North America address man's relationship to political and religious systems, medical technology, surveillance, information systems and other 20th and 21st century technologies that are now pervasive in everyday life.

Here is one of the videos I shot last night... There are allot of 4 letter words I could come up with for the presentation, as it did not go off on time LATE would be the first.... This installation had the greatest potential to be inspiring... 4 letters anyone?

Pwn the Wall - Graffiti Research Lab, 2009
Graffiti Research Lab - Vancouver/Toronto/Ottawa/Montreal, Canada
Multimedia Installation
Working within a milieu of programmers, hacktavists, audio-visualists, installation artists, and critical theorists, GRL focuses on the thresholds of street culture and in the micro-/macro-struggles that take place within the realm(s) of media ecologies. We act as an agent for technology enabling, media democratization, and cultural bridging opportunities. Nuit Blanche will premiere "bombIR" - an infrared-LED equipped spray can that allows writers to physically paint with light. Local graf artists will reference 1930"s era agit-prop images from social movements in Toronto in the depression era. GRL Canada develops open source projects in collaboration with a teamof analog graffiti writers and designers including Rhek, Virus, and The Dark in Vancouver, as well as Fluke and Axe in Montreal. We invite writers from Toronto to contact us via our website for this exhibit.
GRL Canada develops open source projects in collaboration with a teamof analog graffiti writers and designers including Rhek, Virus, and The Dark in Vancouver, as well as Fluke and Axe in Montreal. We invite writers from Toronto to contact us via our website for this exhibit.

The Reflecting Pool & Ancient of Days, 1977-81
Bill Viola - Long Beach California, USA
Video Installation
These two early works will be presented as a video and audio installation encompassing one of Toronto’s major intersections. For twelve hours the accustomed media advertising viewed on a digital media screen will be replaced by an intervention of video art. Experience the artwork at enhanced viewing stations located at the four corners of this busy intersection.

In The Reflecting Pool, a man emerges from the forest and stands before a pool of water. He leaps up and time suddenly stops. All movement and change in the otherwise still scene is limited to the reflections and undulations on the surface of the pond. Time becomes extended and punctuated by a series of events seen only as reflections in the water. The work describes the emergence of the individual into the natural world, a baptism into a world of virtual images and indirect perceptions.In Ancient of Days, time becomes fluid to describe a world where destruction, runs in reverse, becomes creation, where the larger patterns of changing weather on the face of a mountain unfold within the time of a fleeting human action, and the inexorable winding down of time cycles leads to a muted scene of a still life, where remaining natural change is confined within a picture frame hanging on the wall.

Bill Viola is considered a pioneer in the medium of video art and is internationally recognized as one of today's leading artists. He received his BFA in Experimental Studios from Syracuse University, New York, in 1973 and for 38 years he has created videotapes, architectural video installations, sound environments, electronic music performances, flat panel video pieces, and single channel videotapes that have been shown in museums and galleries worldwide and are found in many distinguished collections.

attle Royal, 2009
Shaun El C. Leonardo - New York City, USA
Performance Art
Inspired by Ralph Ellison's The Invisible Man, 20 men will enter Toronto's original bus depot with lingering art-deco design and step into a 17’ steel cage. Shaun El Conquistador Leonardo (artist and trained fighter) along with 19 of Canada’s elite pro-wrestlers will fight blindfolded until only one man is left standing.
The match is an intense, theatrical recreation of the book’s opening scene also entitled Battle Royal. Occupying a space between literary representation, wrestling spectacle and art performance, Battle Royal is an unscripted event harkening back to the actual fight to-the-end bouts African Americans were encouraged to enter for prize winnings during post-slavery American South; while manifesting the artist’s own personal fear of societal invisibility.
Beginning at 7pm members of the audience are invited to be blindfolded and escorted into the cage where they will have the opportunity to feel the intimidation and potential of aggression Battle Royal encompasses. Gradually, as the night reaches its peak, professional wrestlers will be introduced to the ring, initiating the action while the artist, Shaun El C. Leonardo, seeks to withstand the pain, embarrassment and discomfort of struggling in front of eyes without having sight himself.
Shaun El C. Leonardo received his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and currently lives/works in Queens, New York City. He has received residencies/grants from Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, New York Studio School, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Art Matters and the New York Foundation for the Arts. El C.’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and is represented by RHYS MENDES Gallery, Los Angeles/Brasil with upcoming solo presentations in Portugal and Brazil.

Another video gleaned from youtube....

Note: All images/video and text (not specified) is copyrighted by Christopher Cushman. Some text from the nuit blanche website, Rabbit and Battle Royal youtube videos by other visitors. This site does not specify or denote the sexual orientation of any model and as such please post your comments accordingly.

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