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Nuit Blanche at the Gardiner Museum
Ekow Nimako’s 50,000 piece LEGO® barn owl and Nurielle Stern’s interactive winterscape
First 3,000 visitors will get to take home a piece of the installation
Toronto, ON September 22, 2015—The Gardiner Museum will be a hub of activity during Scotiabank Nuit Blanche on October 3, featuring both indoor and outdoor installations and free admission throughout the Museum, including the newly reopened European Porcelain Galleries.
On the front plaza, visual artist Ekow Nimako’s sculpture of a barn owl made from more than 50,000 LEGO® pieces will pay tribute to one of Ontario’s most admired and extirpated species. Entitled Silent Knight, the stark-white, larger-than-life sculpture forges the tactile link between ceramics and LEGO® while exploring the theme of animal extinction for human gain which will be taken up again in the Museum’s special exhibition Kent Monkman: The Rise and Fall of Civilization, opening October 15, 2015.
“I’ve always admired barn owls as silent-winged keepers of the night—unique in their helmed visage even among other owls,” says Nimako. “Yet for years they have been endangered in Ontario due to urbanization and loss of habitat. So if I can add them to the collective memory of the masses for even one night, it may cause a shift in consciousness to help draw these magical creatures back from the brink of local nonexistence.”
Silent Knight is part of the larger 10 for 10th – Memory Lane exhibition, curated by Che Kothari in celebration of the tenth edition of Nuit Blanche, which features ten projects co-produced by the City of Toronto with ten of the city’s leading cultural institutions. It explores the rich and textured terrain of memory, the personal, the shared, the sacred, the nostalgic, the iconic, and the political.
Nimako’s sculpture will remain on display at the Gardiner following Nuit Blanche until October 9, 2015.
Inside the Museum, an interactive installation entitled The Bone Runners by Nurielle Stern, Harbourfront Centre Artist-in-Residence, merges history and myth. The discovery of Stone Age ice skates inspires a winter landscape that combines ceramics, video, and delicate paper objects.
Skates made from paper and porcelain will be strung from their laces; their runners resembling antlers or raw bones sliced to reveal the marrow. A clay television set perched on a sled will flash intermittent images of snow. Piles of porcelain objects shaped like spear points or hand axes will be scattered around the room.
Visitors may take one of the 3,000 spear points or hand axes as a tactile reminder of the experience.
The Bone Runners commission is sponsored by Jason Wong and Angela Jerath.
ABOUT THE GARDINER MUSEUM
Located in the heart of Toronto at 111 Queen’s Park Crescent, the Gardiner Museum is Canada’s only ceramics museum, and one of the world’s great specialty museums. The Gardiner is committed to making a contribution to the medium of ceramics, as well as the community it serves, and is an inviting destination that inspires and connects people, art and ideas through clay. The Gardiner’s permanent collection comprises several extraordinary collections from sophisticated, dedicated collectors, making it one of the most significant centres of ceramics in North America. The breadth of the Museum’s holdings include pottery from the Ancient Americas, rare examples of Meissen, Du Paquier and Chelsea porcelain, Chinese blue and white porcelain, Japanese and Japanese-inspired porcelain, to contemporary ceramics—including an exceptional donation from contemporary ceramics collector, Raphael Yu. For more information, details on exhibitions, events, workshops, clay classes, and more, please visit: www.gardinermuseum.com.
For media inquiries, please contact:
Communications and Volunteer Coordinator
111 Queen's Park
Canada, M5S 2C7