Focus


DesignTO, the Canadian festival adopts a hybrid model

“We feel we have a commitment this year more than ever to deliver impactful design and works of art to our community – a ‘creative’ distraction for everyone after some unpredictable and unsettling times.”

21 January 2021

DesignTO Festival is Canada’s largest cultural annual design festival that celebrates design with over 100 exhibitions and events in Toronto City.

"Distanced and Digital" marks the theme of the 11th edition festival in response to a year where social gatherings and public settings have become sensibly "obsolete".
The programme of events will include some windows installation viewable from the outdoors, in order to comply with current public health guidelines, and other talks, webinars and symposiums that will be held online.

“We are extremely lucky that we are able to move forward with some of our regular scheduled programming safely and at a distance,” says Jeremy Vandermeij, co-founder and Executive Director of DesignTO. “We feel we have a commitment this year more than ever to deliver impactful design and works of art to our community – a ‘creative’ distraction for everyone after some unpredictable and unsettling times.”

Among the exhibitions not to be missed this year is "Support Black Designers", a temporary mural on the Daniels Building designed by Ashita Parekh and Tolu Alabi featuring writing and artwork from Black creatives. Supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, it calls for the urgent investigation and rectification of racism in workplaces and academic institutions of design.

Nome

"Song of the shirt" is an installation that prompts discourse about the ongoing complications with the garment manufacturing industry. Upcycling creates the framework for the installation. We reworked garments by stitching printed patches quoting the book ‘The Song of the Shirt’ by Jeremy Seabrook onto second-hand clothing. Upcycled garments become a new manifestation carrying stories of factory workers.

Song of the shirt

An exhibit titled "3 Miniature Suites" takes on a small-scale perspective on three major social issues, many of which take place in the privacy of our own homes and have increased during Covid-19.

3 Miniature Suites

A virtual talk that people can tune into called "BIPOC Portfolio Collaboration" will discuss the disproportionate representation of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and Persons of Colour) persons within the architecture and design professions.

DesignTO Festival will take place from January 22nd – 31st, to read more about and see the full schedule visit designto.org.



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