Scotiabank Nuit Blanche hits Toronto this weekend

Scotiabank Nuit Blanche returns to Toronto on Saturday, October 4, 2014 from 6:53 pm to sunrise. This free all-night contemporary art event encourages participants to experience Toronto transformed by contemporary art projects created by hundreds of artists. Discover more than 80 independent projects by Toronto’s art community and four curated exhibitions (The Possibility of Everything, The Night Circus, Before Day Break and Performance Anxiety) featuring 48 projects produced by the City of Toronto. Some works encourage an intimate encounter with art, while others will wow you with large-scale spectacle.

Nuit Blanche was originally conceived in Paris, France in 2002, in an attempt to bring contemporary art to the masses in public spaces. Now universally translated as “Sleepless Night,” Nuit Blanche brings more than a million people to the streets of Paris every year. In 2005, Paris organizers contacted the City of Toronto’s Special Events office with an invitation to join the ranks of approximately six other European cities producing similar all-night events. The international success of Nuit Blanche continues to build each year and has expanded its reach beyond Paris to more than 25 cities across the globe – each offering its own version of the all-night art extravaganza.

Toronto was the first North American city to fully replicate the Paris model, and has inspired similar celebrations throughout North America, including San Francisco, New York, Miami and Chicago. At its core, Nuit Blanche is a 12-hour event with a mandate to make contemporary art accessible to large audiences, while inspiring dialogue and engaging the public to examine its significance and impact on public space. Nuit Blanche is both a “high art” event and a free populous event that encourages celebration and community engagement. From sunset to sunrise, city spaces and neighbourhoods are transformed into temporary exhibitions. Unusual or forbidden spaces become sites of contemporary art open for all-night discovery and rediscovery. Cultural institutions, from museums to galleries to artist run centres, open their doors and offer free access to contemporary art. The everyday is suspended as the city’s landscape is changed to welcome a variety of artistic experiences.

Toronto’s Scotiabank Nuit Blanche has wholeheartedly embraced these principles, and has become a cultural phenomenon the likes of which the city has never seen.

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