Monday, January 20, 2020

Toronto Fashion Week to Rethink Platform

Fashion and beauty are not meant to fade away but the week to celebrate it in Toronto is taking a break in 2020 as Toronto Fashion Week reassess the format of the event.

Here is their news release; "To best support the needs of the fashion community in Canada’s unique and diverse market and ensure the resources required to produce the innovative and successful programming are allocated in the most effective way, the organization is pausing production of their bi-annual event and its offerings. The announcement comes as the global fashion community continues to explore the thoughtful evolution of the industry – inclusive of changes in retail patterns and shifts in attitude.

Toronto Fashion Week® remains steadfast in its resolve to continue passionately championing the Toronto Fashion community – engaging the industry, supporting designers, and resonating with consumers as it has since its inception twenty years ago."

Saturday, January 18, 2020

LOOP interactive exhibition in Toronto

Six round loops sit in York Street Park down at Harbourfront, each is an interactive, illuminated moving picture show. Up to two people sit within the two metre diameter ring moving a hand lever back and forth, spinning the picture board which activates music and lights. As the individual frames pass by, you can see the images change and a simplistic movie is produced.
The images are based on 13 fairy tales and the speed of the movie is controlled by how fast you work the lever. As the cylinder spins it sets of strobe lights that light up the black and white pictures and as you keep looking in one spot the images blend together like the earliest movies.

From CREOS website "Loop is a cross between a music box, a zoetrope and a railway handcar – the pump-powered vehicles familiar from Bugs Bunny cartoons. The retro-futuristic machine plays animated fairy-tale loops set in motion when visitors work the lever together. The speed at which the images move, the frequency of the flickering and the tempo of the music are determined by how fast the participants move the lever."
York Park is located at York and Harbour Streets and the Winter Stations sponsored LOOP is opposite to the remaining Gardiner off ramps - left from the removal of the old York, Bay and Yonge Street elevated expressway exits. The free-to-try installation will remain from January 15 till February 9, 2020 with hours between 9am and 10pm. The best time to view the work would be after dark.

The creators were Olivier Girouard, Jonathan Villeneuve and Ottoblix with production by Ekumen and Quartier des Spectacles Partnership of Montreal.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

#IDS2020 International Design Show Toronto 2020

Art and the profession of interior design merge at the 22nd annual IDS20 taking place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from January 16-19.

The MTCC's south building hosts a massive display of designers, artists and vendors centered around the Caeserstone Stage. Special exhibits include the Learning Lab, Studio North, Edible Futures and the Reset Home. There are over 250 design installations, collections and services with plenty of nooks and crannies to explore.
The Interior Design Show showcases "hot-topic design trends and the most innovative of international and Canadian design. An incubator of ideas, the show hosts the most influential design minds of today and the future, curates feature exhibitions and collaborations, and is a platform to launch never-before-seen products. IDS is not just a fair - it’s a total design experience."

You can definitely design your future at the IDS20 and the Opening Night Party is the best way to kick off the show. With over 6,000 interior design fans attending the January 16th evening of fun, food  drinks and design components. Wandering the halls checking out the booths and imagining your space recreated with new possibilities. Plus you can enjoy the many DJs from BelloSound and performances by Brooklyn based Moon Boots. The party features over 30 cuisine and cocktail stations, many with complementary servings.

Caesarstone never fails to disappoint and this year's exhibition by Jonathon Adler was impressive. "The Caesarstone x Jonathan Adler “Dreamland” installation at IDS20 will transform Caesarstone surfaces into a surreal and ethereal free-floating fantasy. Visitors will walk through a heavenly cloudscape that showcases the versatility of quartz through a variety of colours and textures. Adler challenged himself to design a soft environment using Caesarstone, a material more often associated with straight lines and sharp angles. The exhibit will feature clouds, faces and ostrich feathers, in addition to neo-classical columns inspired by Caesarstone’s headquarters in the old Roman port city of Caesaria, and more."

IDS20 is also a learning opportunity with plenty of conferences and classes over the four day event along with a Business to Business exposition called IDS Contact which is "a highly curated B2B exposition dedicated to A&D markets, focused on all verticals of design including workplace, healthcare, hospitality, retail, education, public space and government." The two day conference will cover four themes dealing in the Business of Design, Future of Work, Future of Living, and Technology.

Thursday and Friday are Professional Trade Days while the 18th is Globe and Mail Saturday and the 19th is House and Home Sunday.

Pictures and story by Ann and James Hamilton. See more IDS20 photos after the jump.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Toronto Film Critics Best Canadian Film Award

With 2019 wrapped up, the Toronto Film Critics Association reviewed the eligible contenders and determined the winner of the Best Canadian Film Award 2019 to be 'The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open'. The winning movie was a drama, directed by Kathleen Hepburn and Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers which told the story of a friendship between indigenous women of different backgrounds. Author Margaret Atwood presented the award which also comes with a monetary prize of $100,000. In the picture at top: Phil Lind, Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, Peter Howell, Kathleen Hepburn with award presenter Margaret Atwood (far right) at the Awards. Photo by George Pimentel Photography.

The Toronto Film Critics Association (TFCA) Best Canadian Film category required films released in Canada in 2019, plus films that qualify for the upcoming Oscars and are released by the end of February 2020. The TFCA, established in 1997, is made up of Toronto based broadcasters and journalists who are film critics.

"The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open is an adventurous work shot in real time on 16mm film. It co-stars Violet Nelson as a pregnant young woman fleeing an abusive relationship and was previously named one of the top 10 Canadian movies of the year by the Toronto International Film Festival. “The title is poetic, but the story is grounded in the bone-deep reality that animates the best of Canadian film," TFCA President Peter Howell said of The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open. "TFCA members responded to its empathy, honesty and social currency, as will anyone who views it."

“It’s incredibly satisfying to see the TFCA’s critics celebrate a vital Indigenous story directed by two women working on the cutting edge of Canadian cinema,” said Rogers Vice-Chair Phil Lind. “The originality, emotional power and sheer nerve of The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open is exactly what this award is designed to encourage."

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Toronto No Pants Subway Ride 2020

Underground travel with the Toronto's subway system can be a tad frustrating, so this is the time to join with intrepid friends and lose the pants and put the wacky back into public transit. Have fun at the 19th anniversary of the Global No Pants Subway Ride taking place Sunday, January 12, 2020 which is happening today in over 50 cities spanning the globe. Photo at top from 2015 Ride by Joe Hamilton.
Pants is just a fancy word for leg jail - the 2020 ride
Participants will gather in the Toronto Eaton Centre at the Yonge and Dundas Street entrance at 3pm, drop their pants at 3:20pm and head downstairs into the Toronto Transit Commission Dundas St station on the Yonge-University subway line. At approximately 3:50pm they will have a pantless parade from Wellesley Station to the site of the the after party at The Drink on Church Street.
Meeting with security

The Eaton Centre entrance quickly filled up as hundreds waited for the Ride. Most were there just to witness the event. Then applause filled the space as a lady in shorts showed up with a sign and a megaphone. It wasn't long before security started to get concerned with the crowds and asked if they could get out of the Centre and into the public space of the subway.

Going through the ttc turnstiles

After a short talk the organizer did a short countdown and everyone filed down into Dundas subway station. Then more people stripped down, paid the ttc entrance fare and waited on the southbound train to come.

When the subway train did show up the people jammed into the cars and it got pretty tight in that relatively small space. Most of the travellers were fully dressed with groups of No Pants people mixed in the crowd.

Toronto's facebook site says; "The No Pants Subway Ride is a celebration of silliness to bring a smile to commuter's faces. Ain't no subway ride like a pantsless subway ride." The event is hosted by the No Pants Society.

Improv Everywhere started the No Pants Subway Ride in New York beginning in 2002 with only 7 people joining in the event. Now there are thousands in cities like London, Buenos Aires, Chicago, San Francisco and many more. They expect over 2,000 people in New York this year alone.

"Improv Everywhere is a New York City-based prank collective that causes scenes of chaos and joy in public places. There is no agenda for the event apart from a desire to make others laugh and smile. Improv Everywhere founder Charlie Todd refers to the event as a “celebration of silliness.” The idea behind the No Pants Subway Ride is simple: Random passengers board a subway car at separate stops in the middle of winter without pants. The participants behave as if they do not know each other, and they all wear winter coats, hats, scarves, and gloves. The only unusual thing is their lack of pants."
Toronto Pillow Fight

See photos from a previous Toronto No Pants Subway Ride on my post here. The group that used to put on these silly events was Improv in Toronto with events like the Toronto Pillow Fight (pictured above), Best Busker Song, Gifts for Strangers, Flash Mob - Red Carpet Edition, Zombies Attack and the Flashmob Wedding Proposal. I miss these guys but am glad that some of the events, like the No Pants Subway Ride continue.

See more pictures of the 2020 NO Pants Subway Ride after the jump.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Maple Leafs Outdoor Practice rink at Nathan Phillips Square

After taking the ttc subway to Toronto City Hall the NHL Maple Leafs hockey players held a practice and three on three scrimmage on the rink at Nathan Phillips Square on Thursday. The rink is outfitted with boards and nets to keep everyone safe and it still remains in place during the Outdoor Practice weekend event.

In the square there are several tents setup with skill competitions as well as a lounge that has comfy seats, fireplaces and a DJ playing some tunes. You can win some nice fan swag if you try the competitions. On Friday Maple Leafs alumni Shayne Corson #27 signed autographs for fans in the lounge. Meanwhile on the ice there was a scheduled game featuring first responders like the Toronto Fire Department and the Toronto Police Department.

Shayne Corson signs autographs in the adidas lounge

Saturday will have a Professional Women's Hockey Players Association skills competition while Sunday will have a Maple Leafs alumni game with hockey legends Wendel Clark and Doug Gilmour on the ice.

Thursday, January 09, 2020

Toronto Charity Runs 2020

Pound the pavement and get in your groove. It's time to run.

Hair of the Dog Fun Run - promoting canoe and kayak sports (January - New Years Day)
St Patricks Day 5K Run - (March)
Beaches Spring Sprint - (April)
Bum Run - (April)
CF Run Walk - SickKids and POGO (April)
Goodlife Toronto Marathon - Princess Margaret Hospital (May)
Sporting Life 10k - Run for kids with cancer (May)
Toronto Women's Half Marathon - (May)
Walk of Life Walk/Run/Cycle - Cardiac Health (May)
Colour Me Rad - (May)
Becel Heart and Stroke Ride for Heart - (June), get your bicycles ready
Ride to Conquer Cancer - (June)
Gutsy Walk formerly Heel 'n' Wheel-a-thon - Crohn's and Colitis (June)
Scotiabank Rat Race - for United Way (June)
Walk Now for Autism - (June)
Mud Run - Canada's dirtiest trail run (June)
City Chase - (#1 June)
Toronto Yonge Street Waterfront 10k - (June)
Pride and Remembrance Run - LGBTQ charities (June)
Spartan Race Toronto - Obstacle course racing (June), actually in Orono
Toronto Triathlon - With a Festival (July)
The Beaches Jazz Tune-Up Run/Walk - (July)
City Chase - (#2 August)
5K Foam Fest - for Make a Wish Canada (August)
Mud Hero - get down, get dirty 6km adventure featuring outrageous obstacles - (August)
Toronto Women's 10k and 5k - (August)
Tough Mudder - (September)
Terry Fox Run - Cancer (September)
Telus Walk to Cure Diabetes - Juvenile Diabetes (September)
Rexall One Walk to Conquer Cancer (September)
Longboat Toronto Island Run - Toronto's oldest (September)
Famous Canadian Beer Run and Festival - (September)
Yorkville Run - Various Charities (September)
Toronto 5k - SickKids (September)
Oasis Zoo Run - Come run with the animals (September)
CIBC Run for the Cure - Breast Cancer (October)
Toronto Women's 8k and 5k - Women set the pace (October)
Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon - various charities (October)
Toronto Santa Speedo Run (December) Santa runs around in a bathing suit before he delivers presents for Christmas
The Santa Shuffle - Salvation Army (December)

And one of my favorites the Burlington Santa 5K Run (December)

There is also Polo for Heart - Heart and Stroke (June) and many golf tournaments around the city for charity so there are plenty of ways to get active or help others financially. Run Guides provides an excellent listing of Toronto area runs.

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square