Nuit Blanche 2011

Scotiabank Nuit Blanche

In which we take artistic photos of art.

October 1 – 2, 2011

There’s a free art event that runs in Toronto from “6:59 pm to sunrise”; according to their official twitter, about 7AM.

I’ve gone twice before, but never with a large group. It’s easy to say that going in bigger groups is more fun, at least, until you lose someone. Or four.

There’s a lot of things I missed pictures of, but I’ve linked all pieces to their respective pages on the Nuit Blanche website, which provides a short explanation and image.

Zone B  – Start

Winging it is always the best.

We started off the night with a Korean Barbecue, and after that, we were on our way. Walking past OCAD, we actually missed Future Forward because we thought we’d be going back. Not only that, this year, our school’s exhibit was indoors for once. It was cold outside and we were in a rush to meet up with some other people.

Zone A  – L’Echo – l’eau

Moonlit logrun anyone?

We made our way up McCaul to University of Toronto, then east towards MaRS and their piece, L’écho-l’eau.

Photo from Torakohime

It was the first time I’ve ever had to sign a waiver form to just have a chance to walk into a cm of water. It was slightly obscure, but it was nice in the sense that it played with all the senses. There was a light scent of… something or other that was there; slightly like pine, slightly like chamomile, slightly like lemon.

Walking forwards, umbrellas were given to guests to pass under simulated rain. Cut logs were scattered to remind the guests of times long gone – when rivers were used to transport one of Canada’s most abundant resources. (Which I hope were trees.)

At the end of the hallway was an opening which revealed a pool downstairs. This pool had deeper water, with logs surrounding a moon. Coins were scattered around, presumably to represent stars.

I wonder how much money they made.

Zone B –  Still Life | Film, Vinyl, Paper

The guy should look into photographing ball-jointed dolls. | I suppose that’s good recycling.

Walking down Yonge Street, it was the first time we really noticed how many people were around.

The next thing we saw was the large signs of quotes and photographs relating to the experiences of sex-doll owners; a piece named Still Life. The dolls themselves seemed to look quite convincing and were photographed quite nicely, but those facial expressions were a bit strange, and a bit creepy.

Down the street was a bunch of stools and benches made out of rolls of camera film (and canisters), old vinyl record sleeves (and records), and books. Lots and lots of books.

Yet another photo from Torakohime

The books on the benches could be moved around, which was cool

Leafdust trying to take a picture of the bench

My attempt at trying to take a similar picture to Leafdust’s

Dundas Square was really crowded, but we still managed to find 2 of Yuki‘s friends. We made our way into the Eaton Centre after that.

Zone B [Eaton Centre] –  Paparazzi Bots | Slipstream

“So it’s like, a point and shoot camera on a tripod?” | I seriously didn’t see that there at first.

Even though the mall was closed by the time we got there, there were a lot of people wandering inside. I wasn’t surprised; there was always something put inside the Eaton Centre.

This year it was something called Paparazzi Bots which was essentially a digital camera on a tripod. On wheels. It would follow a target (a person who happened to be in the camera’s viewing range) and snap photos of them, which were displayed on the screens put next to the exhibit. We noticed that the camera often times got too close to the person, to a point where the lens was about a half foot away from the person.

There were two of these placed around the mall: one on the first floor and one on the second. But by the time we got to the second floor, we were more interested in Slipstream instead.

They were a bunch of panels hung from the ceiling – at a specific angle, they would look like this:

It was pretty cool.

Zone B –  Flightpath

“I want to flyyy”

The first thing we thought was, “is there a rave?”

Leafdust had mentioned that people could fly at the Flightpath at City Hall, so we went to check that out next.

They were still setting up and testing the rigs then, so we all stood and took pictures of the laser light show that was there instead.

At the bottom of each scaffold, there were fog machines that gave the lights a really cool effect when they clashed.

They played pretty suspenseful music whenever a guy got on the bird for a test, but it was really pretty anticlimactic. By then, it was getting pretty cold and windy, so we decided to move on, since we didn’t know how long we’d have to wait before they would actually start letting people on.

Zone C –  Cardiac Combustion Chamber | Intensity |
INFRA | TESTtubes | Stereo Efficiency Cheer | Barricades

Cool recycling for cars | Head sized tents | Looked better from far away | “Think I should troll and use a bright flash?” | …… | Primary colours? I can do that too.

Lack of pictures from now until TESTtubes – I had bought a coffee and can’t work my camera with just one hand.

Walking down Bay Street, we stopped at a really bright mini stage. It was surrounded by people, but we could see parts of a car and the sound of drumbeats. This was the Cardiac Combustion Chamber; essentially a large drumset made from a dismantled car. A guy in a black hat was playing, but was just finished by the time we got there. Behind the wall of really tall people, I couldn’t see anything.

On Adelaide Street, we came across a line at Intensity, and decided to line up for fun. The tent advertised a “Condominium Presentation”, so, why not? During the lineup we joked about how there was supposedly a piece last year where they got people to line up just to see how many people would do it. We were in pretty quickly though; instead of seeing a luxury condo, there was a low grass ceiling (which we found out we could stick our heads up over in places marked with an arrow) with a lot of head-sized tents. Some had openings where I was able to also stick my coffee out of. We joked again about the perfect size of the tents in relation to our dolls – where can we get one of these?

It was really warm and humid inside Intensity, and when we got out, we suddenly felt a lot colder. But we trooped on.

The next one was INFRA, at Cloud Gardens. There’s little to no light in the park to bring attention to the wolves (INFRA itself), so I almost ended up falling into a stream of water by accident. INFRA‘s wolves looked really nice sitting on the top of the building, but as we got closer, we realised that they actually looked a lot better from the street than close up.

Next to INFRA was a sign placed next to a suspicious-looking, unlit alleyway.  Down the path was TESTtubes –  a parking lot covered with plastic trees and fabric. Little red and green lights shone covered everything, it looked pretty nice.

There were no lights turned on except for the ones specifically for the piece, so I joked around and wondered what would happen if I turned on flash and snapped it a couple times. Nothing really happened when I aimed it towards the ground, though.


Lights on the panels

It was getting pretty late then, so we made our way back up Yonge Street to the Eaton Centre. We walked past Stereo Effeciency Cheer, but didn’t stay at it for long – only enough to  wait for the light. It was really weird.

At Queen and, there were light posts wrapped in caution tape, an interesting piece made of blue barricades and three blocks made of stacked pieces of wood and painted in primary printing colours. At first I thought they were all different, but all three of those made up Barricades.

With that, we were back at the Eaton Centre.

Zone B [Eaton Centre] –  End

“Why are all the washrooms locked?”

We figured we’d still be able to get to them, but the Eaton Centre had locked all their washroom doors by the time we got back. We resorted to the one at McDonalds (A 2 stall washroom with the potential of 3). I’d known beforehand that the lines would be long since there were a lot of people out, but we never expected for all of the ones at the Eaton Centre to be closed. The exception was the one at the foodcourt, but since we were on the opposite of the mall, we didn’t really think of going there. We also thought that those would have been locked by then too.

After that was dealt with, it was almost midnight, and Leafdust and I had to get going. Even though we didn’t see as much as I thought I would, it was already a lot more than the years before, and a lot better as well.

It was way more interesting than the past 2 years, especially with friends. Definitely going again next year.

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