Art + Sweat: Get ready for the heat at Festival of Cool

Art Spin presents Mobile Sweat at Harbourfront Centre

Art Spin is excited to present its latest iteration of Mobile Sweat, a nomadic wood-fired mobile sauna and platform for contemporary art. This unexpected space for creative experiences, invites people to immerse themselves in discovering the values shared by so many sweat bathing practices: community, connection and care.

We will be bringing Mobile Sweat to the Harbourfront Centre for their Festival of Cool from December 8-18th for both indoor and outdoor experiences, including a unique program of contemporary sound and video art to be experienced while you sweat, a series of sound bathing performances in our temporary lounge space and a residency by visiting nordic sauna guides.

Also on site: Sauna Obscura, the tent edition, a newly commissioned project by Finnish artist Heidi Lunabba. During daylight, the interior of this sauna functions as an immersive camera obscura where the surrounding environment is projected onto the walls and bodies of sauna goers inside.

Join us at the Harbourfront Centre for their spectacular finale to their year-long cultural initiative, Nordic Bridges, fostering cultural exchange between the Nordic region and Canada.

December 8th – 18th, 2022

Open 5pm – 10pm on Weekdays & 12pm – 10pm on Weekends
(Closed Monday December 12th)

Harbourfront Centre, North East Pavilion, Approximately 219 Queens Quay W. A standalone building on the North East corner of the campus (formerly the Lavazza Cafe).

Featured Programming includes:

Sauna and bathing inspired photographs by Kenneth Bamberg (Åland Islands), Ruth Kaplan (Canada), Sami Kero (Finland) and Jussi Puikkonen (Finland).

A series of video works by Stein Hennigsen (Norway) and the North American premier of video artist Tone Bjordam’s (Norway) Seasonal Transitions screened inside the mobile sauna designed and built by artist Chris Foster.

Visiting from Finland, join sauna guides-in-residence Sauna Konkeli for interactive sessions that draw upon the deep roots of Finnish sauna culture, and the playful yet profound connections between human and natural elements.

Experience Sound Bath, a unique musical program curated by Akash Bansal featuring a series of ambient live performances that reinterpret ‘spa music’ before or after your sauna session.

Visit for a full schedule of programming.

Mobile Sweat will be on the road across Toronto and Ontario until February 2023, before it joins other artist-created sweat bathing structures for Art Spin’s Public Sweat in the spring.

How to participate:

  • Swimsuit & towel are essential, and a robe, sandals, water bottle and sauna hat are recommended if you have them, but not required to participate.
  • The event is free, and open on a first-come-first-serve basis. As there is limited capacity, there could be a short wait to join in the saunas, particularly on weekends.

What to expect?

  • Come prepared to spend some time, we recommend at least 1.5 hours to give time to check-in with our bathing attendants, change into your swimsuit, alternate between hot and cold spaces, and leave time to wind down in the lounge.
  • Our staff will be on hand to answer any questions and help introduce you to the process if it’s new to you

The venue is partially accessible. The building is located on the ground level with ground level washrooms and entrances, both saunas are outdoors with ramps to each. The washrooms are single-person, all gendered washrooms, however they are not fully accessible and do not have automated doors. The nearest accessible parking is in the Harbourfront Centre underground parking at 225 Queens Quay West, which has elevator access to ground level very close to the venue. Please reach out to with any specific questions or requests regarding accessibility.

Image Credits: (First) Participants watching a video by Stein Henningsen at Mobile Sweat, 2022, photo by Priam Thomas. (Second) Photographic artwork Marjaniemi, from the series Avanto by Sami Kero. (Third) Mobile Sweat sauna trailer by Chris Foster, photo by Priam Thomas.

Since 2009, Art Spin has been activating decommissioned venues and unique public spaces to produce ephemeral projects, curated exhibitions, and bicycle-led art tours. Programming site-specifically, across disciplines in unique and alternative spaces is at the core of their curatorial methodology and their desire to make audience experiences more engaging while reimagining the possibilities of public art in the process.

Coming in spring of 2023, Public Sweat is the latest project from the team at Art Spin, who are forever exploring the boundaries of public art. Public Sweat is an art and sweat bathing experience inspired by sauna and bathing practices and their shared values of community, connection and care.

Instagram: @artspintoronto
Facebook: @artspin
Twitter: @artspintoronto

Instagram: @public.sweat

Thank you to all of our volunteers, partners, collaborators, and supporters who make Art Spin projects possible.