Remember Tomorrow: A Telidon Story

Courtesy of Vicky Lum.

Remember Tomorrow: A Telidon Story

September 6 – October 21, 2023
InterAccess, Toronto ON
Curated by Shauna Jean Doherty

Presented in honour of InterAccess’s 40th anniversary, this exhibition celebrates Telidon, the Canadian-made technology that inspired the artists who founded InterAccess in 1983.

Telidon was a networked computer graphic system developed in a lab by the federal government, a decade before the World Wide Web. Ahead of its time, it enabled Canadians to interact with information from home using televisions connected to phone lines and special Telidon hardware.

From 1981 to 1987, artists experimented with the limitations and potentialities of Telidon, creating some of Canada’s first computer art. Stored on floppy disks, it was thought that this significant period in digital art experimentation had been lost when the Government of Canada announced the cancellation of the Telidon initiative in 1985 and the hardware needed to view their contents fell into obscurity.

Remember Tomorrow: A Telidon Story captures the excitement that surrounded the cutting-edge technology in its day with archival equipment on loan from Ingenium Canada’s Science and Technology Museums, a print archive of ambitious Telidon advertisements, 35mm slides of commercial Telidon graphics and 12 restored interactive Telidon artworks, most of which have never been on public display.

Related Events:

Opening Reception | September 6, 2023, 7 – 9PM

Artist Talk: Hacking Telidon in the 21st Century | September 8, 2023, 6 – 7:30PM | Register Here

About the Curator

Shauna Jean Doherty is a curator and writer compelled by the social history of technology. She has curated media art focused exhibitions, video screenings, and events since 2009 in a variety of commercial, public, and artist-run spaces including, Arsenal Contemporary Art (Montreal & Toronto), Vtape (Toronto), EM Media (Calgary), The Centre For Art Tapes (Halifax), The Art Gallery of Ontario, VIVO Media Arts Centre (Vancouver) and the Museum of Vancouver. In 2021 she received the Joan Yvonne Lowndes Award from the Canada Council for the Arts for curatorial excellence. Her written work has addressed topics including sonic warfare, art and AI, post-internet aesthetics, and internet art archiving. Her graduate thesis research examined glitch art and the aesthetics of technological failure. She is currently a Writer and Editor at OCAD University.

About the Restoration Lead

John Durno is a Librarian at the University of Victoria, where as Head of Library Systems he leads the team responsible for digital asset management, digital preservation systems, web development, server administration, and specialized desktop deployments. His research interests include the recovery and restoration of Telidon graphics and supporting technologies, and curating a collection of historic computers, software, and documentation.

Join John for an artist talk, “Hacking Telidon in the 21st Century”, on September 8, 2023 to learn about the significance of Telidon art in the context of 1980s computing technology, and the challenges involved in building a Telidon decoder in the present day. Specific attention will be given to data recovery from old media, custom software development, the strengths and weaknesses of emulation, how to draw Telidon graphics, and why a hair iron was a key project requirement.

Featuring Artwork From

Adele D’Arcy, John Fekner, Robert Flack, Benjamin Gaulon, John Gurrin, Glenn Howarth, Don Lindsay, Pierre Moretti, Andrew Owens, Paul Petro, Douglas Porter, Jerome Saint-Clair, Geoffrey Shea, Nell Tenhaaf, and Peter Zmudzki.

View artist bios at InterAccess’s website.

InterAccess logo

Founded in 1983, InterAccess is a non-profit gallery, educational facility, production studio, festival, and registered charity dedicated to emerging practices in art and technology. Our programs support art forms that integrate technology, fostering and supporting the full cycle of art and artistic practice through education, production, and exhibition. InterAccess is regarded as a preeminent Canadian arts and technology centre.

950 Dupont St., Unit 1
Toronto ON M6H 1Z2

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Tuesday–Saturday, 11am—6pm

Accessibility Information
We regret InterAccess does not have barrier-free access; we are currently working to improve the accessibility of all facilities. There are five steps up with handrails to the main entrance which has an automatic (push button) door. Inside all facilities are on the same level, including a single-user accessible washroom.