Toronto Biennial of Art highlights: Isonomia in Toronto | Doo Red | You Are a Good Apple


Adrian Blackwell, Isonomia in Toronto? (harbour), 2019. Commissioned by the Toronto Biennial of Art. Photo: Toni Hafkenscheid.


How do we learn and listen with the lake? Taking up experiential and artist-led approaches, The Toronto Biennial of Art’s Programs explore issues, practices, and methodologies related to The Shoreline Dilemma.

Led by Ilana Shamoon and co-curated by Clare Butcher and Myung-Sun Kim, the five programming streams—Co-Relations, Currents, Storytelling, Tools for Learning, and the Toronto Biennial of Art Residency—activate the two main Exhibition sites, 259 Lake Shore Boulevard East and the Small Arms Inspection Building, and also connect with projects around the city. Through storytelling, conversations, performative interventions, workshops, and readings, Programs invites visitors to gather and learn together in responsive and engaging formats along the water’s edge and beyond.

Upcoming Programs Highlights Include:

Isonomia in Toronto
Program: Currents

Adrian Blackwell’s two interrelated structures at 259 Lake Shore Blvd E and the Small Arms Inspection Building host weekly performances and readings. Invited guests include poet CAConrad, artists Camilo Godoy and Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Apache violinist Laura Ortman, Sister Co-Resister, and percussionist Marshall Trammell.

Date: Friday, September 27
Time: 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: 259 Lake Shore Blvd E

En Vivo y En Directo is a performance in the form of a live news variety show hosted by Camilo Godoy. Guests include artist Pamela Sneed and academic Andil Gosine, among others. Together they will engage with topics ranging from current and historical events as a part of the Biennial’s Performance and Reading Program: Isonomia in Toronto. The show can be viewed online and live to witness the production of television and the construction of meaning and history.

Date: Saturday, September 28
Time: 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: Small Arms Inspection Building, 1352 Lakeshore Road East in Mississauga

Following Pamela Sneed’s participation in Camilo Godoy’s En Vivo y En Directo on September 27th at 259 Lake Shore, this New-York based poet, writer, performer and artist will offer readings of her work.


Life of a Craphead, Doo Red, 2019. Poster by Emerson Maxwell.

Doo Red
Program: Toronto Biennial of Art Residency
Date: Saturday, September 28
Time: 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Location: Ireland Park Foundation, 3 Eireann Quay

Doored is a performance art show that was organized and hosted by Life of a Craphead from 2012-2017. A special presentation at the Toronto Biennial of Art returns with an updated name: Doo Red. The performance will also be incorporated into Life of a Craphead’s new video project, a pilot/first episode for a comedy series starring themselves, re-enacting the content of their lives.

Hosted by: Life of a Craphead with Hannia Cheng

Performances by: Kiera Boult, Nice Hands, Oliver Husain, Laura McCoy, Aliya Pabani, jes sachse, and Lisa Smolkin

Music by: Xuan Ye

Fountain and poster by: Emerson Maxwell

Co-presented in partnership with Ireland Park Foundation and Trinity Square Video.

Accessibility: Ireland Park Foundation (IPF) site is a heritage site and does not currently have wheelchair accessible washrooms. IPF is working toward creating an accessible venue in the future.

The Toronto Biennial of Art Residency program is made possible with the generous support of the TD Bank Group through its corporate citizenship platform, The Ready Commitment.


Diane Borsato, YOU ARE A GOOD APPLE (2019). Courtesy of the artist.

Program: Co-Relations
Date: Sunday, September 29
Time: 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: Small Arm Inspection Building, 1352 Lakeshore Road East in Mississauga

To inaugurate ORCHARD, a public art project commissioned by the City of Mississauga, artist Diane Borsato brings people together to taste and learn about apples and community orchards. ORCHARD is a living sculpture made up of old and eccentric varietals of apple trees, planted by Borsato at Small Arms. The work expands ideas of public art and seeks to foster enduring connectedness to land, plants, food, and one another.

Apple Tasting 1-4pm
Drop-in apple tasting and free Syrian Apple Cake catered by Newcomer Kitchen. (While supplies last)

Conversation 1-2pm
Diane Borsato in conversation with Bill O’Keefe, apple collector and Heritage Orchardist of O’Keefe Grange in Dobbington, Ontario

Urban Orchards 3-3:30pm
Q&A with Susan Poizner of Toronto’s Orchard People on fruit trees and urban orchards.

Co-presented in partnership with City of Mississauga and Culture Days.

To access the YOU ARE A GOOD APPLE publication, download HERE. Designed by J.P. King.

Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital Project, Part 1
Program: Co-Relations
Date: Thursday, October 3
Time: 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Location: Humber College, Lakeshore Campus, 3252 Lake Shore Blvd W

From 1890 to 1979, the Humber College Lakeshore Campus was a psychiatric hospital. The Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital Cemetery is two kilometres north of the campus, where 1,511 patients are buried in mostly unmarked graves. Humber College students and members from the Among Friends Community Mental Health program created a commemorative artwork based on the history of the site and the patients. Community groups and individuals are invited to gather and remember patients’ names through talks and community art projects that engage with people’s lived experiences of the mental health-care system.

A screening of the short film 1511, created in collaboration as part of this community engaged project, will be followed by a discussion. A newly commissioned sculpture by Rocky Dobey will also be unveiled in memory of the former patients. Coffee, cookies, and refreshments will be served.

Accessibility: ASL, live captioning, accessible venue, and attendant care

Co-presented in partnership with Humber College, Among Friends Community Mental Health Organization, and Workman Arts.

About the Toronto Biennial of Art

Launching in fall 2019, the Toronto Biennial of Art (the Biennial/TBA) is a new international contemporary visual arts event that is as culturally connected and diverse as Toronto itself. For 10 weeks every two years, the city will be transformed by exhibitions, talks, and performances that reflect the local context while engaging with the world’s most pressing issues of our time. In an effort to make contemporary art available to everyone, the Biennial’s free, citywide programming aims to inspire people, bridge communities, and contribute to global conversations from a variety of perspectives.

For more information, visit:, @torontobiennial, and #TObiennial19 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


Media Contacts
For additional information, Libby Mark or Heather Meltzer at Bow Bridge Communications, LLC, Toronto: +1 647-544-8441, New York City, +1 347-460-5566;