上星期六晚，多伦多市举办了Nuit Blanche。Nuit Blanche 是法文, 直译是白色的夜晚，另一种翻译则是不眠之夜。Nuit Blanche 是一个通宵达旦的现代文化艺术展，始源于法国巴黎(2002年）。现在其他城市也开始仿效，包括柏林，芝加哥等。今年，是多伦多的第二届Nuit Blanche。去年，虽下雨， 还是吸引了约450千人。今年，天气超好，看有超过500千人。
那晚，整个多伦多市摇身变成一个庞大的文化艺术馆。市内大多数的展览中心，大学, 博物馆，画廊全都免费开放给市民。大街小巷，废弃了的建筑，草场花园，停车场，或一些你最意想不到的地方都可见到各式各样，新奇古怪的艺术展，艺术表演等。而且，一切都是十二个小时不停地为你承献。时间从傍晚的七时至第二天早上七时。最可喜的是，一切免费 ！
我和Ed约九点多出来，街上已人潮汹涌，车水马龙。 找上了约好了的朋友后, 我们就寻宝似地找东西来看。有些真的很有创意，很惊喜。有些很互动，所有人都可以参与，扩大了所谓艺术的局限。你和我都是艺术家，都有创作能力。有些嘛，我觉得：‘啊？这样也叫艺术！’。算了吧！后现代艺术嘛！是这样的啦！:)
其实, 除了展览, 我也很喜欢观察人。看看多数什么人来，什么年龄的，什么族群的，他们喜欢什么。不提那些穿得古灵精怪的人或大声吵叫的学生，我想提一提我见到的几个华人家庭。父母带着小孩们，都穿得很朴素，脸上有种害臊。我想，可能是新移民， 不是游客。他们手上有本Nuit Blanche 的小册子，不时会翻一翻，却好像不知在寻找什么。看到展览时，有时惊喜，有时诧异。感觉到他们像旁观者多于参与者。他们可能觉得格格不入吧。或许，他们从来没见过这种场面，这种新奇的艺术。他们未必喜欢，可来到新国家，想见识一下，体验一下这里人的生活。我衷心祝福他们，希望他们会慢慢适应和喜欢上这里的生活。
He did not use pen to draw, instead he used black sticky tape. The photo below is his ‘drawing’ by his sticky tape.
天上橙橙气球 Sky with orange ballons
There were colour papers, colour pens and everything you needed to make a card on the table. You made your own card and just put it up for display.
If you stand in front of the white screen (picture on left), your image will appear at the big screen (picture on right) in the park live. What an clever idea ! Some people got so excited because never seen themselves appeared in big screen like a movie stars, and they danced their lives away. Standing in front of the big screen, I wondered what’s the big deal but they were very entertaining !
Last Saturday night, Toronto held its annual Nuit Blanche, literally means White Night or All Nighter in French. It is a sunset to sunrise all night cultural and contemporary art festival. It originated in Paris, 2002 and spread to other cities (including Berlin, Chicago etc) then. Toronto launched its first Nuit Blanche last night with a great success that had attracted over 400,000 people despite its cold and rainy weather. This year, with the bless of fantastic weather, it was possible to have over 500,000 people.
That night, the whole downtown Toronto transformed into a giant art and cultural display center. Most galleries, museums, universities all opened publicly for free. You might find many different and interesting arts in least unexpected places, from alleyways, to car parks, to demolition sites, to parks etc. And they were displayed and welcomed you with warm arms for 12 hours (from 7pm to the next day 7am). The most important thing was, they were all free !
Ed and I went to Nuit Blanche at about 9pm. The crowd was already huge. After meeting with our friends, we started to look for things to see like in a treasure hunt. Some of them were quite creative and interesting. Some were quite interactive, everyone was welcomed to be involved in creating the art piece together. Some of them might make you wondered if it was really an art form. Anyway, I guess, they were so called ‘post-modern contemporary’ art, so there were no restrictions and no rules to follow.
Apart from arts, I was also interested in observing the people around. I was curious on the composition of the audience : what kind of people, which age group, which ethic groups, what did they like….As usual, there were some people or artists took this opportunity to dress up ‘artistically’, mostly simply for fun, and there were large groups of loud college students too. But what really attracted my attention was a few small Chinese families – parents with young kids. They dressed humbly and always had a shy look in their faces. They did not look like tourists, I guess they were new immigrants to this country. They had a small Nuit Blanche guidebook in their hands, they would flip through it sometimes but seemed like did not know what to look for. They seemed like outsiders rather than participants. They probably felt they were not belong to here and did not ‘understand’ this kind of events. I guess, they never had encountered these sort of interesting arts and art events in their home countries. From their facial expressions, they might not like it, yet they were trying to experience this new culture and this new country. I wholeheartedly wishing them a good new life here and hoping them would start to like this country soon.
We were home at 3am and some friends stayed till the next morning 7am. It seemed like everyone enjoyed their beautiful ‘white nights’.