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The Top 20 Exhibitions To See At Nuit Blanche 2017

What happens when hundreds of artists from around the world turn Toronto’s downtown core into a giant, night long art exhibition? Nuit Blanche 2017! The theme for this year's Nuit Blanche is as exciting as ever as we get to look forward to Many Possible Futures. There are many timely and relevant ideas that will be shown this year, and here we have some of the best ones for you to check out! Written By Sunita Singh Hans, blogger at RU Student Life

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Passage Into The Light, Monsignor Fraser College

Curator: Monsignor Fraser College

These dwellings adorned with mirror mosaics take you through the journey of afflicted migrants. A peek through the peep holes of each dwelling reveals a story of transformation, and leads to the final fourth dwelling which is a red and white mosaic that radiates a kaleidoscope of colours.

Why you should go: This socially moving piece depicts the journey of afflicted migrants in a stunning, captivating way.

Drawbacks: Fake swinging birds.

The Nature Deficit Disorder (NDD) Clinic, Wilfrid Laurier University

Curator: Bergur Ebbi, Jennifer McDougall, Nourhan Hegazy and Prateeksha Singh

This installation explores the possible impact on human health if we are denied regular access to the natural environment. As “patients” to the clinic, visitors experience an interactive choreography of visual, lighting and sound elements that bring the futuristic plot to life.

Why you should go: Find out what it’s like to live in the year 2067

Drawbacks: We’re deprived of enough nature already in 2017

Invisible Tattoos, Artscape Youngplace

Curator: Zahra Saleki

Photography based installation art inspired by Zahra Saleki’s memories in Canada that begins with a powerful image: 150 sets of eyes, belonging to people that she met in Canada.. The room is also surrounded by mirrors, light boxes and includes an interactive element where the audience can own and tell her/his/they story in their own language for 5 minutes. The audience can also get temporary tattoos that represent a label in society that will illuminate.

Why you should go: The only thing better than glow in the dark tattoos are glow in the dark tattoos with a profound meaning.

Drawbacks: 150 eyes staring at you

Automobile, Wellesley Street West & Queen's Park Crescent West

Curator: Joseph Namy

A group of cars with souped-up sound systems are parked under a bridge in front of the parliament building. You’ll hear the bass before you see them, as their systems are connected together in a 6 channel immersive sound piece amplified through the cars.

Why you should go: If you love music, this one’s for you.

Drawbacks: You can’t escape whatever song these 6 cars will play, even if it’s Nickelback.

Listen to the Chorus, Ontario Police Memorial Park

Curator: Nasim Asgari

An experimental composition combining poetry and music, Listen to the Chorus was developed from a series of conversations about women's experiences and hopes for the future. This immersive video installation seeks to amplify voices of those who identify as women and to present a chorus of resistance that implores the audience to listen.

Why you should go: There is literally nothing better than inspiring conversations surrounding women.

Drawbacks: You’ll probably leave with a raging desire to go protest outside the White House.

The Stolen People, Nathan Phillips Square

Curators: Syrus Marcus Ware, Melisse Watson

This government issued workstation reflects the future's decimated landscape. People clock in for their shifts and work tirelessly during the days to filter water, grow food hydroponically, attempt to make communication with “the others” and take their daily dose of life, a serum that protects citizens from the high levels of pollutants in the air and water.

At night the space is converted into an activist meeting place by The Stolen People, rebels who are resisting the system and have created a life-giving serum of their own. They are Black people - people who would not be eradicated.

Why you should go: This powerful message fits perfectly with this year’s Nuit Blanche theme.

Drawbacks: Students don’t like to think about graduation, nevermind 100 years from now.

Manitowapow, Speaking to the Moon, First Canadian Place

Curator: Julie Nagam

This structure depicts landscapes both in their natural environment and altered states of industry and destruction caused by human impact. Combining natural elements (willow saplings) with ethereal visual projections and soundscapes, Nagam has created a series of three wigwam-like dome structures which invite viewer's engagement.

Why you should go: To gain a deeper insight into how we can look after our planet.

Drawbacks: You just need to walk down Yonge to see how a natural environment is destructed.

Delight, 401 Richmond

Curator: [R]ed[U]x Lab

An interactive installation that uses the ambient noise of the room to trigger movement from glowing orbs of light. Intended to react to the noises that audiences create in the space, DELIGHT uses kinetic sculpture to create a social and playful sound-making environment.

Why you should go: A fun, interactive social experience that will make for a fun Instagram

Drawbacks: A lot of people making really weird sounds

Digital Consciousness, Only One Gallery

Curator: Krista Kim

Krista Kim explores the physiological effect of digital light with this display, showing how the light is a manipulation of software and the sensation it has on the human brain.

Why you should go: See firsthand the impact that digital media has on you

Drawbacks: We pretty much stare constantly at a screen 24/7 anyway

Layered Cities, Artscape Youngplace

Curator: Anne Hanrahan

This installation investigates city transformation in Canada and countries that Canadians have originated from by layering images of both settings to suggest new forms of urban experiences. Based on diverse cultural design practices that citizens bring to their city, the projections stand in a maze-like structure where they change with the audience's movement through the space.

Why you should go: To see the origins of Canadians in a unique, fun way

Drawbacks: Kerr Hall is about the only maze-like structure we can deal with

Playhouse: Invisible City, Artscape Sandbox

Curator: Domanique Grant

Domanique Grant’s music album PLAYHOUSE takes you through an interactive play space that reimagines the meaning of “home” for millennials in Toronto’s hidden public housing neighborhoods.

Why you should go: Interactivity, music and meaning

Drawbacks: The millennial generation's concept of home is usually a McDonalds at 3am

The Waste Land, 401 Richmond Street

Curator: Jessica Bebenek

Watch this performance progress throughout the night as the artist translates T.S. Eliot’s canonical poem “The Waste Land” into a knitted tapestry. The artist will knit the 500-line poem over 12 hours.

Why you should go: A beautiful and relaxing piece to watch

Drawbacks: Watching knitting for 12 hours isn’t keeping anyone awake

Starscape, 5 Camden Street

Curator: F_RM lab

The project features an undulating fabric canopy catching computationally generated moving projections of stars and the northern Canadian night sky.

Why you should go: When do you ever get the chance to see stars in the city?

Drawbacks: When it leaves, Toronto's current polluted night sky will seem even sadder.

Truth, Yonge-Dundas Square

Curator: Brian Leitch

Using recycled clothing and textiles from H&M’s Garment Collecting Initiative, TRUTH, reimagines discarded garments transformed into a work of art - an abstract sculpture.

Why you should go: This sculpture is super accessible because it’s located right at Yonge-Dundas square

Drawbacks: You just need to see a Pitman dorm room to find several abstract sculptures made out of clothing piles

Disturbing Graffiti, 4120 Graffiti Alley

Curators: Mitchell Chan and Brad Hindson

This portal is design students will create and implement a temporary site-specific installation that uses the latest lighting technology to illuminate and animate features, public art, and buildings in Toronto's Graffiti Alley.

Why you should go: Seeing something you see everyday cast in a completely new light

Drawbacks: Dark alleys at night are usually the beginning of every horror story

Project Mackenzie, Mackenzie House

Curator: EnvisionTO

As twilight fades on the eve of 09.30.17 a portal will open at the Mackenzie House, where you can experience the year 2167

Why you should go: This immersive experience will be the talk of Nuit Blanche

Drawbacks: Expect a long line up for this one

Foreign Bodies, Ryerson Artspace

Curators: Camille Rojas, Elise Rasmussen, Avery Steel

Three artists create works in which performing bodies adjust the nature of the real or imagined spaces they inhabit. This awareness of the body in space is further magnified as visitors to the gallery move through other bodies in an attempt to access the work.

Why you should go: A unique perspective on how we share space and movement

Drawbacks: Moving through other bodies sounds a lot like Casper

Photon Gallery 3.0, 73 Ossington Avenue

Curator: Site 3 coLaboratory

Photon Gallery 3.0 is a collection of mind-blowing, awe-inspiring interactive lighting installations which include a garden of LED plants and creatures; the transformation of a building wall into a Tetris game; 'invisible' paintings using infrared LEDs; a Ruben's Air Hockey Table that produces small flames that react to sound; a 'Bullet-Time Waterfall' that lets people freeze falling water droplets mid-air; wearable tech costumes; a light-paintable canvas with laser 'paint brushes' for people to create their own art; and glowing orbs that communicate and interact with the public through a combination of light and sound.

Why you should go: Countless interactive installations that will make for some amazing instastories

Drawbacks: Could potentially resemble the creepy Anglerfish scene from Finding Nemo

Speculating in Futures, University of Toronto Schools

Curator: University in Toronto

The front lawn of a century-old high school is filled with interactive installations based on popular games or fortune-telling activities. It will show how a single event can result in a multiplicity of outcomes. With determination and luck, good fortune can result – but how many end up broken?

Why you should go: Support an innovative, student directed project

Drawbacks: Students probably don’t need anymore anxiety related to outcomes of the future

Wiggly Street, Thompson Way

Curator: Wiggly Events

“Wiggly Street” is an urban celebration of Canada, 150 Years into the Future. It includes projection mapping, sculptural installations with LED components representing futuristic urban forestry, and live audio and group dance performances. This performance will symbolically ignite the 'Reactor' that powers the installation, fueled by the vibrations caused by audience movement.

Why you should go: Shown every hour on the hour and is easy to get to

Drawbacks: The Reactor sounds like a supervillain

Poetry, Performance and Protest, Victoria College

This protest invites Nuit Blanche Toronto audiences to sit or stand and engage in a discussion about the multiple meanings and definitions of Canadian values. Protest signs that marry the political and the artistic in their designs will create a circular amphitheatre. These placards will serve the dual purpose of becoming an art installation and of constructing a safe and positive space for the exchange of ideas and the appreciation of art.

Why you should go: In today’s political climate, we all need a safe space to express our thoughts and concerns.

Drawbacks: Talking Canadian values means the potential passionate discussion about Tim Hortons and use of the word ‘sorry’

Send us your pics and thoughts while you're out at Nuit Blanche 2014 by tagging us @RUStudentLife, and make sure to follow us on Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook! We'll be out hitting the streets all night and can't wait to share our experience!

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