TORONTO – On August 25, 2015, the City of Toronto released the complete artistic program for the 10th edition of Scotiabank Nuit Blanche. On Saturday, October 3 from 6:55 p.m. until sunrise on Sunday, October 4, the streets of Toronto will feature more than 110 art projects created and performed by approximately 400 local, national and international artists.
With that being said, I had the honour of meeting Ekow Nimako, 1 of 10 visual artists featured in this year's 10 for 10th – Memory Lane exhibitions, and whose work is coproduced with the Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art. I humbly entered Ekow's studio on Northcliffe Boulevard where he was in the process of refashioning his LEGO wing feathers on his larger-than-life sculpture entitled, Silent Knight.
Sculpted with more than 50,000 LEGO pieces, ‘Silent Knight’ is Ekow's monumental tribute to one of the most admired and extirpated animal species in Ontario, the barn owl. The stark white sculpture captures the beauty and stealth of this exquisite bird like it has never been seen before.
“I've always admired barn owls as silent-winged keepers of the night, unique in their helmed visage even among other owls, yet for years they have been endangered in Ontario due to urbanization and loss of habitat. So if I can add them to the collective memory of the masses for even one night, it may cause a shift in consciousness to help draw these magical creatures back from the brink of local nonexistence.”
Similar to Ekow’s creative and artistic thought process, this particular exhibition explores the textured terrain of memory; dissolving the lines between space, place and time. It allows for contemplation and reflection while providing fertile ground for the creation of millions of new memories in the process.
Relying on the seemingly infinite variations of sloped and angled LEGO pieces; Ekow masterfully animates the inanimate, breathing a unique quality of life into the popular plastic medium.
With a unique talent for breathing life into plastic, Ekow Nimako's art completely redefines the way people view contemporary freehand sculpture. Whether transcending the written word, capturing the tenderness of nature, or exploring complex themes of otherness and race, Ekow Nimako provides provocative, thought-provoking artwork for the modern age, masterfully created one LEGO® piece at a time.
For more information, visit: ekownimako.com
In honour of Scotiabank Nuit Blanche's 10th edition, photographer, director and curator Che Kothari created the 10 for 10th – Memory Lane exhibition, which features 10 projects spread throughout the city, and coproduced with the following 10 cultural organizations: Art Gallery of Ontario, Artscape Wychwood Barns, Bata Shoe Museum, Drake One Fifty, Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art, The Gladstone Hotel, Justina M. Barnicke Gallery at Hart House, University of Toronto, OCAD University, Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and Toronto International Film Festival.
“Every year we produce Nuit Blanche is quite different because we work with new artists and new curators annually… But I think what’s quite special this year is this 10 for 10th – Memory Lane exhibition area in celebration of our tenth year,” said Kristine Germann, Programming Manage of Economic Development and City Culture Events with the City of Toronto. “ It’s special because the focus is on really working in full coproducing relationships with those 10 major arts and cultural institutions and artists.”
Details for the full program and City-produced exhibitions are available at: www.scotiabanknuitblanche.ca.