Toronto’s The Bentway presents an ongoing series of free onsite tours exploring selected works in the current public exhibition, New Monuments for New Cities. Each guided excursion and discussion will be led by a different Torontonian – artists, designers, planners, community members and active urbanists – who will reflect on the artworks, The Bentway’s layered histories and potential futures, as well as the city itself. The guide will lead participants throughout The Bentway and interpret the site and works based on their own expertise and interests. All tours are free, running on select Tuesdays from 6:30-7:30pm. Below is more detail and highlights of what to expect during some of the dates.
The June 11th tour will be conducted by Kaitlin Wainwright, Director of Programming at Heritage Toronto. Kaitlin is a public historian and Director of Programming at Heritage Toronto, a charity and City agency that promotes Toronto’s rich heritage and shares the stories of the city’s people and places. Kaitlin’s previous experience includes managing the most active plaques program in North America and cultural administration of public art and works of commemoration in Ottawa.
The June 18th tour will be led by Sally Han, Manager, Cultural Partnerships, at Economic Development and Culture at the City of Toronto. Sally leads the portfolio of Toronto’s cultural grants programs, public art programs, cultural policy and research, the Toronto Book Awards, the Poet Laureate and Photo Laureate programs, and space provision through community space tenancies and support for infrastructure development.The June 25th tour will be led by Michèle Pearson Clarke, a Trinidad-born artist who works in photography, film, video and installation. Using archival, performative and process-oriented strategies, her work explores the personal and political possibilities afforded by considering experiences of emotions related to longing and loss. She was recently appointed to serve a three-year term as the Photo Laureate for the City of Toronto.
The July 9th tour will be conducted by New Monuments for New Cities artist Life of a Craphead, the collaboration of Amy Lam and Jon McCurley whose work spans performance art, film, and curation. Their new monument, Angry Edit of a Wikipedia Pageis a screen capture of their disruption to The Treaty of Huế (1884), signed after the French colonialists seized the Imperial City in Huế, Vietnam, marking the beginning of French colonial oppression in Vietnam for the next 70 years. For a single day, their fact checking shed light on the truth of the conflict. Amy is Chinese and Jon is Vietnamese-Irish and the duo lives and works in Toronto.The July 23rd tour will be led by Maggie Groat, an interdisciplinary artist who utilizes a range of media including works on paper, sculpture, textiles, site-specific interventions and publications to interrogate methodologies of collage. The approaches and perspectives demonstrated within her practice are informed by her Haudenosaunee and Settler ancestry, and her roles as mother and environmental steward.
The August 6th tour will be led by New Monuments for New Cities artist Susan Blight, and a special guest. Susan is an interdisciplinary artist and filmmaker from Couchiching First Nation, Anishinaabe, Turtle Clan whose work has been screened and exhibited nationally and internationally. Susan is co-founder of The Ogimaa Miikana Project, an artist/activist collective working to reclaim and rename the roads, streets, and landmarks of Toronto with Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe language). Susan’s new monument, Untitled (Land and Life) honours the Anishinaabeg peoples of Canada and the United States by depicting Nanaboozhoo, the half-human, half-spirit teacher, in the traditional Anishinaabeg pictograph technique.
The August 20th tour will be led by Ellie Joseph, organizer of the Two Row on the Grand event in Six Nations, in conversation with Daniel Rotsztain, the Urban Geographer. Ellie will guide a site walk while discussing the principles of the Two Row wampum belt, and how they intersect with The Bentway’s art, histories, designs, and approaches to city building.
Free Public Art Tours
Select Tuesdays until August 20, 2019
June 11 – Kaitlin Wainwright (Heritage Toronto)
June 18 – Sally Han (City of Toronto)
June 25 – Michèle Pearson Clarke (City of Toronto Photo Laureate)
July 9 – Life of a Craphead; Amy Lam & Jon McCurley (New Monuments artists)
July 23 – Maggie Groat (Independent Artist)
August 6 – Susan Blight and guest (New Monuments artist)
August 20 – Ellie Joseph and Daniel Rotsztain (Two Row on the Grand / The Urban Geographer)
Meet outside The Bentway washrooms to the west of the Skate Trail
by 6:25pm for the hour-long tour
You need to sign up in advance at thebentway.ca/art-tours-2019
For more information on The Bentway, visit TheBentway.ca.