Bringing together an impressive list of artists, live music and interactive art projects, the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) reimagines the usual Gallery experience with its popular First Thursdays series, including after-hour performances, food and drink, interactive activities and art talks. The 19+ event takes over the entire building on the first Thursday of each month from 7 to 11:30 p.m. The fall lineup from September to November celebrates two new AGO exhibitions, Alex Colville and Introducing Suzy Lake, and Toronto’s annunal Scotiabank Nuit Blanche. Musical headliners Bry Webb, Tim Hecker and Majical Cloudz will perform on the Walker Court main stage while local and international artists take over the Gallery for a season of unforgettable cultural mashups.
Tickets for September’s First Thursday are on sale now at www.ago.net/FirstThursdays. Regular-priced tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door. Admission for AGO members is $10 in advance and $13 at the door.
In celebration of Alex Colville, Canada’s beloved precisionist painter, Bry Webb (of The Constantines) takes the Walker Court main stage for a sublime musical performance. The Weather Station will open the show in a special presentation in partnership with Sappyfest, the annual festival in Alex Colville’s adopted home of Sackville, N.B. Guelph-based contemporary dancer Katie Ewald will animate Colville works appearing in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining with a series of interpretive tableaus inside the exhibition, while Alex Beriault and Shannon Lea Doyle present a Colville-inspired three-hour performance balancing on a double-sided diving board. Plus, interactive projects by Tor Lukasik-Foss and Garry Baldwin, a Colville-inspired balloon animal-making workshop; and a special edition of Grolsch Open House in Galleria Italia featuring a performance by River Tiber.
In October the AGO gives partygoers a sneak peek at Toronto’s largest art spectacle of the year, Scotiabank Nuit Blanche. Featuring a headlining performance by Tim Hecker, whose 2013 album Virgins made the 2014 Polaris Prize Long List, the event focuses on artists who push boundaries and experiment with exciting new ideas and approaches to art. Anadam Dance Theatre’s stunning work Cascade will extend to the ceiling in Walker Court as dancers repeatedly climb up and down ropes affixed to the trusses above. Legendary Canadian artists Fastwurms will park their Fortune Teller Machine outside the AGO, where visitors can exchange a coin and some information in exchange for a personal fortune message. Current AGO artist-in-residence Ame Henderson will preview Rehearsal/Performance, which will be performed at the AGO on Nuit Blanche. Plus, interactive installations by Shasti O’Leary Soudant and Chélanie Beaudin-Quintin.
Nov. 6, 2014 – Introducing Suzy Lake
November’s night of music, art and drinks will draw inspiration from the works of internationally acclaimed photographer Suzy Lake, in honour of her AGO exhibition Introducing Suzy Lake. The event will feature performances, installations and art talks that examine and critique ideals of the body, gender and identity, including the U.K.-based artists The Girls, who will present the Canadian premiere of their acclaimed performance Diamonds and Toads. And the unforgettable Majical Cloudz will headline the night with an intimate musical performance in Walker court.