Sunday, October 05, 2008
Scotiabank Nuit Blanche 2008
Yesterday into today Nuit Blanche was once again held along the streets of downtown Toronto. Sponsored by Scotiabank, Nuit Blanche features contemporary art installations and performances around key sections of the city from 6:52 pm to sunrise, and there's no admission fee required; you simply show up, walk around, and enjoy the sites.
So of course, one question that needs to be asked is what is art? Art, like many things, is subjective, and it means many things to different people. For me, art is something that mimics reality, that helps me loose myself in the recreation of a moment, the experience of that moment, and I certainly found this at Nuit Blanche, though not through the installations.
I was out for about 2 hours and I walked all over downtown. The light displays at City Hall mimicking Pong and a Space Invaders style game were pretty cool (though I'm sure murder for the city's electric bill), and the city was alive with a very vibrant feel. I was also very entertained by some drummer named Mike who was at the corner of Yonge and Dundas, but apparently he's been coming there for 25 years and had nothing to do with the show. Too bad, as he was bloody awesome.
I saw a few installation films (that were pretty bad so I ran out), some kind of cocoon installation in a small park, and a waterfall made of recycled plastic, all of which failed to move me; I was pretty disappointed with the bulk of the show itself.
There were a bunch of people getting painted up like zombies, but this was also rather underwhelming as well, as zombies should smell more like brains and less like weed. Sadly, being a modern art show, the smell of marijuana was everywhere, and I never could stand that smell. At all.
No, I can't say that I was too keen on Nuit Blanche itself. So what did I enjoy so much about the show? In truth, I found the most enjoyable aspect simply to be walking around the streets of Toronto with my friends, laughing, talking, and joking (One Timbit!), as we never get to see each other often enough. The art show itself was little more than an excuse to hang out and have some fun, and I'll remember that moment long after I've forgotten some silly projection of someone doing ballet.
The show helped me to remember the importance of the people in my life and what they mean to me, and that's how Nuit Blanche helped me to think outside a box.