The newest installation in the Patricia Harris Gallery of Textiles & Costume on Level 4 in the Museum's Michael
Lee-Chin Crystal, BIG is exclusively drawn from the ROM's collection of nearly 50,000 textiles and costumes. Showcasing 40 artifacts from around the world, this unique exhibition includes objects assuming their BIG
status in a myriad of ways. With some objects publicly displayed for the first time, the installation offers a fresh, new way of exploring the ROM's renowned collections.
"This installation highlights objects
that, in one way or another, are BIG," states Dr. Alexandra Palmer, Nora E. Vaughan Fashion Costume Curator in the ROM's World Cultures department. She continues, "BIG is not just about size. Even the smallest textile
can have BIG personal, social, and cultural value that shifts according to context. BIG brilliantly looks at the meaning of textiles and fashions from around the globe and across time. We look forward to illustrating
for our visitors that less can most definitely be more."
A recent acquisition, and now a highlight of the Museum's permanent collection and this exhibition, Passage #5was designed by John Galliano for
Christian Dior Couture. Specially commissioned by the ROM and made possible by the generous support of the Louise Hawley Stone Charitable Trust, this dramatic coat-dress was inspired by fashion illustrator René Gruau's
drawings of the 1940s and 1950s and is a 21st century reworking of Dior's 1947 New Look. Passage #5 was a highlight of Dior's Spring 2011 collection.
Other exhibition highlights representing the breadth of the
ROM's international collections include a Pre-Columbian Peruvian feather cape dated to 1000 -1476 AD; an Indonesian bark cloth wrapper; and spectacular textiles created for Exposition Internationale des arts décoratifs
et industriels modernes - the BIG Art Deco exhibition held in Paris, 1925. Textiles from Albania, Canada, China, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, France, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, India, Italy, Nigeria, Sierra
Leone, United Kingdom, and USA, vibrantly demonstrate the exhibition's BIG global scope. In addition to Galliano for Dior, contemporary fashions by leading designers Martin Margiela, Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Tam, and
Tom Ford for Yves St Laurent are among the other BIG names on display.
On Now Until Sept. 2013
Patricia Harris Gallery of Textiles & Costume, Level 4 in the Museum's Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, 100 Queens Park
ROM - Mesopotamia: Inventing Our World
The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is the sole Canadian venue to host Mesopotamia: Inventing Our World
during its international tour.
This impressive exhibition explores over 3,000 years of accomplishments of this ancient civilization to reveal the significance many still have on our lives today,
Mesopotamia features over 170 priceless objects from the esteemed holdings of the British Museum. These artifacts, most of which have never been seen in Canada, are augmented by iconic objects from the ROM's own
renowned collections and other leading institutions, including the University of Chicago Oriental Institute Museum, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archa.
Geographically, Mesopotamia (from the Greek
"[land] between the Rivers") encompasses present-day Iraq, north-eastern Syria, and south-eastern Turkey. Urban civilization originated in the area, accompanied by the establishment of the first cities and complex forms
of social organization and economic activity. Significant developments during this period include the invention of writing, long-distance communication, trade networks, and the first empires. Sophisticated art and
literature began and flourished concurrently with remarkable intellectual, spiritual, and scientific advances.
While Mesopotamia addresses numerous benchmarks of the society's social and technological
developments, including the Agricultural Revolution and the development of village economies, its main focus is on the emergence of cities and states in ancient Sumer (4000 - 2000 BCE); the Assyrian World Empire (1000 -
600 BCE); and the rise and fall of Babylon (600 - 540 BCE).
June 22 - Jan. 5, 2014
The Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queens Park Circle | Admission: $19 - $27 (Mesopotamia Exhibit and General Admission)
AGO - Ai Weiwei: According to What?
One of the world's most provocative contemporary artists, Ai Weiwei: According to What?
chronicles Ai Weiwei's work from the mid-1990s to the present.
The exhibition blends art history, activism and traditional Chinese materials and symbols to create a compelling vision of the artist's everyday
reality and his ongoing fight for freedom of expression in the face of Chinese government censorship.
Featuring more than 40 large scale works of art including sculptures, photographs and video and audio installations, Ai Weiwei: According to What? is on display from Aug. 17 - Oct. 27
and the AGO is the only Canadian stop on a North American tour. Ai Weiwei: According to What? was organized by the Mori Art Museum, Tokyo and the Art Gallery of Ontario.
It is curated by the Mori Art Museum's chief curator, Mami Kataoka.
Ai Weiwei: According to What? includes many large-scale and detailed artworks, including:
(2008-12), which contains 38 tons of reinforced steel rebar recovered from post-earthquake fissures and arranged specifically for the exhibition;
(1988), a sculpture comprised of a wine bottle and peasant shoes that pays homage to the artwork of Marcel Duchamp and Jasper Johns;
Grapes (2010), showcasing a number of wooden stools from the
Qing Dynasty (1644-1912) that artisans have rejoined into a spiky cluster with seats in, legs out;
New York Photographs
(1983-93), a selection of 98 black-and-white documentary photos that Ai took during his time studying art in New York City;
Surveillance Camera (2010), a piece of technology carefully replicated
in marble, recreating the device that the Chinese government uses to keep an eye on the artist in his home; and
He Xie (2010), an installation of more than 3,000 porcelain river crabs. The term
"he xie" refers to the word "harmonious," which is part of the Chinese Communist Party's slogan and is now internet slang for official online censorship.
In response to the 2008 earthquake tragedy in China's Sichuan province, Ai Weiwei began a commemorative design project called aiflowers to memorialize the thousands of children who perished in the
disaster. In celebration of Ai Weiwei: According to What?, Ai has designed several exclusive aiflower items for shopAGO—marking the first retail partnership between a hosting gallery and Ai's
studio—including a collection comprising a postcard, commemorative notebook, magnet, pencil, pin and T-shirts.
Aug. 17 - Oct. 27
Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas St. W. | For admission prices and hours please click here
A U G U S T L I S T I N G S B Y D A T E
Every summer, Toronto revs up with the excitement of calypso, steel pan
and elaborate masquerade costumes during the annual Caribana Festival and Parade. Celebrating its 46th anniversary, the festival is the largest Caribbean festival in North America.
Among the highlights is the
Caribana Parade, one of the largest in North America. Thousands of brilliantly costumed masqueraders and dozens of trucks carrying live soca, calypso, steel pan, reggae and salsa artists jam the 1.5 km parade route all
day, to the delight of hundreds of thousands of onlookers.
Other key events include the King and Queen of the Bands Competition, the Junior Carnival, the Annual Gala (July 26 Liberty Grand) and Beyond De Lime
at Ontario Place featuring outdoor concerts of Caribbean music, calypso harbour cruise parties and glamourous dances on Aug. 4.
One of the biggest events is Drake's OVO Fest held at Molson Amphitheatre featuring Frank Ocean, Drake and James Blake.
Until Aug. 4
Various venues | For Further Information, please click here
Toronto Summer Music Festival
Now in its eighth year of bringing outstanding
classical music experiences to the city in the summer, Toronto Summer Music Festival features renowned Canadian and international artists performing in 12 mainstage concerts at Koerner Hall and Walter Hall, plus
masterclasses, lectures, interviews, workshops, and free outreach concerts.
The theme of the 2013 Festival, Paris La Belle Époque, celebrates the unrivalled cultural phenomenon that swept turn of the century
Paris and showcases great musical works by French composers performed by renowned artists including France's distinguished Trio Pennetier Pasquier Pidoux, pianist Cédric Tiberghien, Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Brentano
String Quartet, Juno award-winning Gryphon Trio, and bass-baritone Philippe Sly.
For information on all 2013 Festival activities call 416-408-0208 or for online information, please click here
Until Aug. 3 Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor St. W. and Walter Hall. 80 Queens Park, U of T Music Faculty Bldg. | Tickets: there are many option for passes and individual
ticket sales. Please click here for the details, or call 416 408-0208
This year's festival will feature over 35 theatre productions and the return of the popular Music Series, Live Art Series and Performance Bar.
Featuring plays written by Adam Lazarus, Guillermo
Verdecchia, Kevin Rees, Sky Gilbert, Jordan Tannahill, Cliff Cardinal, d'bi.young, Heidi Strauss, Greg MacArthur, Aurora Stewart de Peña and productions directed by Kelli Fox and David Ferry among others. SummerWorks
also welcomes a piece produced by Mitchell Cushman who directed last year's hit show Terminus.
The 2013 SummerWorks National Series will feature five productions including How to Disappear Completely, making
its SummerWorks debut after a successful run at Factory, and a piece by veteran artist Nadia Ross, entitled 7 Important Things. For the first time SummerWorks welcomes a full length piece, as part of the International
Series, from Berlin titled Schützen by Cecilie Ullerup Schmidt and Matthias Meppelink.
As part of the Youth Programming Series SummerWorks welcomes two productions from the Sears Ontario Drama Festival as well
as a piece from The Amy Project (Artists Mentoring Youth).
SummerWorks Music Series
includes six original pieces featuring acclaimed experimental folk duo Snowblink in partnership with Toronto-based scenographer Trevor Schwellnus, and in an unprecedented experiment, country-folk indie-rock collective The Wooden Sky team with award-winning theatre director Jennifer Brewin to present a travelling concert. The performance includes a multiple stop tour of the Shaw and Ossington area ending at the Black Box Theatre (Queen and Dovercourt) for a memorable concert experience.
Transforming The Great Hall into a summer dreamscape, Maylee Todd with the help of Steve McCarthy present Maylee Todd's Musical Planetarium, a synthesized version of her hit LP Escapology with a kaleidoscope
of visuals and live projection designs made by award-winning filmmaker Tess Girard.
The Music Series also features collaborative shows by Justin Rutledge and director Andrew Shaver, The Bicycles with Maggie
MacDonald and Stephanie Markowitz and Absolutely Free with Michael Rubenfeld.
For a complete guide to the festival, please click here
Aug. 8 - Aug. 18 Various Venues | Tickets:
please click here
The largest festival of its kind in North America, Scotiabank BuskerFest in support of Epilepsy Toronto features more than
100 of the world's top street performers. Audiences will be dazzled and charmed by acrobats and artists, magicians and musicians, comedians and clowns, statues and stilts, puppets and pyrotechnics - and some
acts that defy description - as performers from Canada, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States descend on Toronto's Downtown Yonge BIA
Neighbourhood for four days of silliness and spectacle in support of a great cause.
Over one million spectators attended Scotiabank BuskerFest last year, a massive success that prompted organizers to move the festival to the Downtown Yonge Neighbourhood (Queen to College Streets and
surrounding areas - including Trinity Square, Yonge-Dundas Square and Gould Street in the Ryerson campus).
Scotiabank BuskerPlay Kids Zone, located in Trinity Square Park (behind the Eaton Centre - accessible
from Bay, Dundas and Albert Streets or through the mall), has wonderful free activities for kids: balloon twisting, face painting, a Fancy Pants Dress Up area, hula hooping, workshops in the Scotiabank Tent and
For further details, please click here
Aug. 22 - Aug. 25 Yonge St. between Queen and College | Admission: Donation to Epilepsy Toronto (suggested $10)