The Bentway Announces a Winter Art Exhibition by Maureen Gruben

Two large-scale installations create critical links between life in the Western Arctic and global environmental and cultural concerns


Moving with joy across the ice while my face turns brown from the sun (2019). Archival inkjet on Epson Hot Press Bright; 120″ x 42.5″. Edition of 3

The Bentway announces a two-part winter season exhibition by Inuvialuk artist Maureen Gruben (Tuktoyaktuk NWT). Presented alongside The Bentway’s popular ice skating season, a pair of new installations will transform The Bentway Skate Trail and nearby Bentway Studio through large-scale multimedia public artworks. Moving with Joy opens December 22 and Annivik opens December 29. Both works run through February 21.

Moving with Joy is a large-scale installation of sculptural sleds along The Bentway Skate Trail, featuring photo and video of daily life while spring ice fishing in Husky Lakes. Sleds in the Arctic are created to move people from one place to another. Here, they facilitate a different kind of geographic connection by superimposing images from northern life onto downtown Toronto (surrounding visitors as they skate under the Gardiner).

A sister artwork will be presented at the new Bentway Studio space, located a block away at the Canoe Landing Campus. A large-scale photographic installation, Annivik, shares images captured in the landfill of Maureen Gruben’s home community, Tuktoyaktuk (NWT). Translated as ‘birthing place’, Annivik suggest endings are not disappearances but transitions; that leaving one place necessarily means entering another. The work will be presented outside on the terrace as well as inside at The Bentway Studio.

Moving With Joy and Annivik present very different but deeply connected aspects of contemporary life in our community of Tuktoyaktuk. They offer a celebration of our land and ancestors as well as a window into the challenges we face,” says Maureen Gruben.

“TD is proud to support Bentway’s winter art exhibition featuring Inuvialuk artist Maureen Gruben,” says Farah Kurji, Senior Manager, Philanthropy, TD Bank Group. “Through the TD Ready Commitment, the Bank’s global corporate citizenship strategy, we are helping foster connection within the arts while amplifying contemporary, underrepresented and diverse voices across the broader arts and culture landscape.”


Moving with Joy at The Bentway Skate Trail, 250 Fort York Blvd.
Dec 22-Jan 3: Daily 12:00pm-9:00pm
Jan 4-Feb 21: Weekdays 5:00pm-9:00pm; Weekends, Civic Holidays, PA Days: 12pm-9pm

Annivik at The Bentway Studio, 55 Fort York Blvd.
Dec 29, Dec 30: Daily 12:00pm-7:00pm
Jan 4-Feb 21: Wednesdays through Sundays 12:00pm-7:00pm

Please note that The Bentway requires masks in indoor spaces like The Bentway Studio.

Health and Safety

The COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing, as such, The Bentway will continue to assess the situation and adjust operations as necessary. Please stay up to date on all of the latest information on our website or on social @thebentway.

About the artist

Inuvialuk artist Maureen Gruben employs an intimate materiality as she disassembles and re-combines disparate organic and industrial elements. Polar bear fur, beluga intestines, and seal skins encounter resins, metallic tape, and bubble wrap, forging critical links between life in the Western Arctic and global environmental and cultural concerns. Gruben was born and raised in Tuktoyaktuk where her parents were traditional knowledge keepers and founders of E. Gruben’s Transport. She holds a BFA from the University of Victoria and has exhibited regularly across Canada and internationally. She was longlisted for the 2019 Aesthetica Art Prize and the 2021 Sobey Art Prize, and her work is held in national and private collections.


The Bentway’s Winter 2021-2022 Season is generously supported by: The City of Toronto, Government of Ontario, TD Bank Group, Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, Canada Council for the Arts, and The Bentway’s growing family of supporters.

Acknowledgements from The Bentway

As an organization dedicated to the creation of shared and inclusive public space, we acknowledge that our work takes place on the treaty lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit and the traditional territory of the Huron-Wendat, the Haudenosaunee, the Métis, and many other Indigenous nations. Tkaronto, “the place in the water where the trees are standing”, is now home to many diverse Indigenous people. We recognize them as the past, present and future caretakers of this land.

We would like to pay our respects to all who have gathered and will continue to gather in this place. We are grateful to have the opportunity to work together to care for The Bentway lands and act as stewards of the space.

About The Bentway

The Bentway re-imagines how we build, experience, activate, and value public space together. Of the city; about the city; for the city.

The Bentway Conservancy is an independent charity, a not-for-profit powered by vital partnerships with the City of Toronto, residents, supporters, artists, creatives, city-builders, and dreamers.

Our work is anchored by a new and growing site located under Toronto’s Gardiner Expressway, which we operate, maintain, and program as a platform for creative practice, public art, and connected urban life. As a new model for public space in Toronto and a forum for social engagement, The Bentway continues to evolve amidst the changing landscape of the city, developing opportunities and partnerships that address the key issues of our time.


The Bentway
55 Fort York Blvd.
Toronto ON M5V 4B3