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Past Events

January 2019

Sunday, January 13
Drawing Workshop with Kate Wilson
1 - 5 pm
Fool’s Paradise, 1 Meadowcliffe Drive, Scarborough

At this workshop, at Fool’s Paradise, Kate Wilson led participants through a variety of approaches to working with ink, to produce small studies inspired by the landscape around McCarthy’s former home and studio.

Presented in conjunction with the body may be said to think

Saturday, January 12
Guided Tour of Fool's Paradise
1 - 3 pm
1 Meadowcliffe Drive, Scarborough
Co-presented with Ontario Heritage Trust

In this guided tour of the former home and studio of Doris McCarthy, visitors had the opportunity to explore the artist’s unique space overlooking the Scarborough Bluffs, while learning about her life as an artist, writer, and educator.

Presented in conjunction with the body may be said to think

November 2018

Wednesday, November 28
Doris McCarthy: Unveiling the Artist, Author, and Educator through her Archival Fonds
1 - 2 pm
Co-presented with the UTSC Library

Librarian Paulina Rousseau and archivist Tanis Franco delivered a talk about the Doris McCarthy fonds, highlighting materials in the DMG vitrines exhibition Revisiting Fool's Paradise, and providing information on the archival process.

Presented in conjunction with the body may be said to think

Sunday, November 18
Canada Council Grants Information Session
1 - 3 pm: Presentation
3 - 5 pm: One-on-one sessions (sign up sheet available at the presentation)
Presented by the Canada Council for the Arts, with the Ontario Arts Council and Toronto Arts Council

The DMG hosted an information session about Canada Council grants, with participation from the Ontario Arts Council (OAC) and Toronto Arts Council (TAC), designed for individual artists working in any artistic field of practice. The presentation will be in English, with a Q&A held in both English and French.

Saturday, November 17
Reframing Doris McCarthy: A Symposium on the Life and Work of Doris McCarthy
9 am – 5 pm

Keynote by: Erin Silver

Presentations by: Steven Beckly, Jan L. Coates, Dustin Garnet, Nancy Holmes, Meaghan Hyckie, Harold Klunder and Catherine Carmichael, Eva Kolcze, Ralph Kolewe, Lou Sheppard, Wendy Wacko, and Lynne Wynick

This free, one-day, public symposium explored fresh perspectives on the life and work of Doris McCarthy through artist talks, poetry readings, academic papers, performances, a book launch, group choreography, and moderated discussions. Ranging from long-time friends and colleagues of McCarthy's, to young artists and producers, the presenters contributed new interpretations from a broad range of expertise within the fields of contemporary art, music, poetry, filmmaking, and dance that trace the artist's legacy through spirituality, mythology, and the power of place. This multi-disciplinary symposium examined McCarthy's impact on local and artistic communities as a pioneering feminist, innovative artist, and community builder.

Presented in conjunction with the body may be said to think

Thursday, November 15
the body may be said to think Opening Reception
5 - 8:30 pm
Exhibition tour by Stuart Reid 7 pm
Free shuttle bus departs OCAD U (100 McCaul St) at 5:30 pm, to return at 8:30 pm, first come, first served

We celebrated the opening of the body may be said to think with a public reception and exhibition tour by curator Stuart Reid, with artist Kate Wilson in attendance.


Thursday, November 8
Artist Talk by Vanessa Dion Fletcher
1 - 2 pm
AA304, Arts & Adminstration Building, University of Toronto Scarborough 
Part of the Visiting Artist Lecture Series, co-presented by the DMG & Department of Arts, Culture & Media

Vanessa Dion Fletcher employs porcupine quills, Wampum belts, and menstrual blood to reveal the complexities of what defines a body physically and culturally. She links these ideas to personal experiences with language, fluency, and understanding. All of these themes are brought together in the context of her Potawatomi and Lenape ancestry, and her learning disability caused by a lack of short-term memory.

October 2018


Tuesday, October 30
Rouge Book Launch
5 - 7 pm
Co-presented with the Department of English

We celebrated the launch of Adrian De Leon's debut poetry collection, Rouge, at U of T Scarborough! Visitors were able to buy the book, meet the author and celebrate poetry! Rouge is a response to the 2012 mass shooting at a block party on Danzig Street, Scarborough. The city’s east end becomes a source of poetic inspiration, and the two intersecting subway lines provide the organizing structure. From west to east, and north to south -- Kipling to McCowan, Finch to Downsview -- the stations on the way inspiring form, voice, and content, meditation, commentary, and geometry. The City is the Poem.


Tuesday, October 30
the stories we tell each other
Workshop led by Hiba Abdallah
1 - 3 pm

Hiba Abdallah led a seminar that explored some of Scarborough’s narratives, myths and secrets. Participants were asked to bring a piece of writing to contribute to a public reading of Scarborough-inspired texts, that explore the identity of place, the motifs of memory, storytelling and fiction. The workshop concluded with a writing exercise where participants contributed an open letter as part of Abdallah’s project Dear Scarborough.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Tuesday, October 23
Artist Talk by Steven Beckly
1 - 2 pm
AA304, Arts & Adminstration Building, University of Toronto Scarborough 
Part of the Visiting Artist Lecture Series, co-presented by the DMG & Department of Arts, Culture & Media

Steven Beckly is a Toronto-based artist and photographer. Recent solo exhibitions include Meirenyu at Daniel Faria Gallery (Toronto) and A tender touch can bend the straightest of things at Eastern Edge Gallery (St. John’s). Beckly’s work was also included in the 2017 VICE Photo Show at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montreal. Most recently, Beckly was Artist-in-Residence at the Doris McCarthy Artist-in-Residence Centre (Scarborough) and the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center (Philadelphia). Beckly received his MFA from the University of Guelph.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Tuesday, October 23
Photo-based Installation: Approaches to Presenting Images
Workshop led by Steven Beckly
10 am - 1 pm
AA304, Arts & Adminstration Building, University of Toronto Scarborough 

This workshop looked at creative and non-traditional approaches to presenting, framing and installing photographs. Drawing from contemporary photo-based practices, Steven Beckly suggested and demonstrated various strategies that challenge the traditional ways of framing and finishing images for presentation. In the last half of the workshop, participants' works-in-progress were discussed and used as case studies.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Saturday, October 20
Jollibee Talk & Lunch with Patrick Cruz
1 - 3 pm
Jollibee Scarborough, 15 William Kitchen Rd

On location at Jollibee Scarborough, Patrick Cruz delivered a talk on the cultural significance of the
fast food chain, particularly within the Filipino diaspora, followed by a family-style lunch from the menu.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Wednesday, October 17
Artist Talk by Sanaz Mazinani
1 - 2 pm
AA304, Arts & Adminstration Building, University of Toronto Scarborough 
Part of the Visiting Artist Lecture Series, co-presented by the DMG & Department of Arts, Culture & Media

Sanaz Mazinani is an artist, curator, and educator based in San Francisco and Toronto who holds degrees from the Ontario College of Art & Design, and Stanford Universities. Working in photography and large-scale installations Mazinani’s research is focused on the study of digital image propagation and its impact on representation and perception.


Sunday, October 14
Contemporary Art Bus Tour
12 - 5 pm

Tour began at Koffler Gallery (180 Shaw St) and travelled to Art Gallery of Mississauga, Art Gallery of York University and Doris McCarthy Gallery. Guided tours or artist/curator talks were offered at each venue. At the DMG, curator Tiffany Schofield delivered a talk about It Can Only Be This Place.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place

September 2018


Saturday, September 29
Hiba Abdallah
Everything I Wanted to Tell You
Albert Campbell Square, 150 Borough Drive
Presented by Nuit Blanche Scarborough as part of the exhibition Styll, in partnership with Doris McCarthy Gallery, and in association with Culture Days

What are the untold stories, secrets and conversations about places you think you know? EVERTHING I WANTED TO TELL YOU captures complex narratives of Scarborough’s diversity, nuance and resilience.

During the day, the Scarborough Civic Centre is used as a government building where constituents are counted and categorized. For one night on Nuit Blanche, Hiba Abdallah will use the building to explore deeply personal stories of Scarborough residents: their enthusiasms, anxieties and histories. The stories will be displayed as a large-scale text installation projected directly onto the 90-foot facade of the building.

The collection of messages was gathered through workshops with an intergenerational group of eleven Scarborough residents. The group visited lesser-known historical sites in Scarborough and several organizations that are part of the backbone of the community’s cultural scene. The full collection of stories is at the Doris McCarthy Gallery as part of It Can Only Be This Place.

This project was made in collaboration with members of the Scarborough community: Sofia Habib, Timothy Hunter, Noor Khan, Pamila Matharu, Joy Smith, Etta Snipe, Helen Su, Zahra Tootonsa, Trevor Twells, Islin Waite and Deshaun Whyte.


Thursday, September 27
Alyssa Fearon in conversation with Alyssa Bistonath & Bishara Elmi
1 - 2 pm
Leigha Lee Browne Theatre, University of Toronto Scarborough 
Part of the Visiting Artist Lecture Series, co-presented by the DMG & Department of Arts, Culture & Media, and NUIT TALKS, presented by Nuit Blanche Toronto and Cultural Hotspot

A discussion between Nuit Blanche Scarborough artists Alyssa Bistonath and Bishara Elmi, moderated by curator Alyssa Fearon. The conversation centred on the artists’ respective collaborations with communities in Scarborough for their Nuit Blanche projects.

Alyssa Bistonath is a lens based practitioner whose work focuses on themes of memory and belonging. The daughter of Guyanese immigrants, Bistonath endeavours to look at modes of representation by investigating nostalgia, exploring evidence, and interrupting the archive.

Bishara Elmi is a multidisciplinary artist, writer, educator and public speaker working in visual forms and with numerous materials and creative processes. Elmi is currently residing in Toronto by way of Mogadishu. The artist also works individually and within collectives centering BIPOC youth, women and femme voices and stories, and Elmi has created many spaces for these types of storytelling and skill-sharing to take place.

Alyssa Fearon is a cultural producer, arts manager and independent curator. Raised in Scarborough, Ontario, Alyssa actively seeks new ways of organizing artistic projects within communities that have not traditionally been sanctioned as places of creativity and innovation. She has organized a range of projects, from large-scale performances by international artists to community-based youth artist residency programs. Alyssa currently works at the Art Gallery of Ontario in marketing, while pursuing an independent creative practice.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Tuesday, September 25
Artist Talk by Hiba Abdallah
Moderated by Tiffany Schofield
1 - 2 pm
AA304, Arts & Adminstration Building, University of Toronto Scarborough 
Part of the Visiting Artist Lecture Series, co-presented by the DMG & Department of Arts, Culture & Media, and NUIT TALKS, presented by Nuit Blanche Toronto

Hiba Abdallah is a text-based artist who often works in collaboration with others to develop public installations, projects and exhibitions about the collective narratives of place. Abdallah’s work cultivates a playful yet reverent sense of community that aims to foster the public imagination. She currently works and lives in Toronto, Ontario.

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Sunday, September 23
Scarborough Mycological Foray
Led by Diane Borsato, Amish Morrell and the Mycological Society of Toronto's Alan Gan
11 am - 2 pm
Free shuttle bus departs OCAD U (100 McCaul St) at 10 am, to return at 2 pm, first come, first served

This family-friendly mushroom-gathering foray in the Highland Creek Ravine at the University of Toronto Scarborough provided opportunity for participants to collect and study wild mushrooms and enjoy nature.

The walk began from the Doris McCarthy Gallery promptly at 11 am -- at 1 pm, the group gathered with Borsato, Morrell and Gan to discuss and identify the species collected.

This program is part of Outdoor School, an ongoing series of artistic and educational activities by Diane Borsato, Amish Morrell and various community collaborators

Presented in conjunction with It Can Only Be This Place


Wednesday, September 19
It Can Only Be This Place Opening Reception
6 - 8:30 pm
Exhibition tour by Tiffany Schofield 7 pm
Free shuttle bus departs OCAD U (100 McCaul St) at 5:30 pm, to return at 8:30 pm, first come, first served

We celebrated the opening of It Can Only Be This Place with a public reception and exhibition tour by curator Tiffany Schofield, with artists Hiba Abdallah, Steven Beckly, Alyssa Bistonath, and Patrick Cruz in attendance.

June 2018


Wednesday, June 20
Scarborough Sign Project Launch
12 - 1 pm

Scarborough Arts and its community and campus partners came together for the official launch of the Scarborough Sign! At its first location at U of T Scarborough, the sign was activated by artist Adam Zivo through photographs from his ongoing series #LOVEISLOVEISLOVE, which captures and celebrates queer love in all its forms.

The Scarborough Sign is presented by Scarborough Arts in partnership with the Department of Arts, Culture, and Media at U of T Scarborough, with support from McWood Studios. The installation at U of T Scarborough is presented in partnership with the Doris McCarthy Gallery, Positive Space Committee, Scarborough Campus Students' Union, and SC:OUT. The Scarborough Sign is a Signature project of the Cultural Hotspot, produced in partnership with the City of Toronto.

May 2018


Sunday, May 27
Contemporary Art Bus Tour
12 - 5 pm

Tour began at Koffler Gallery (180 Shaw Street) and travelled to Art Gallery of Mississauga, Art Gallery of York University and Doris McCarthy Gallery. Guided tours or artist/curator talks were offered at each venue.

Presented in conjunction with With an instinct for justice


Friday, May 18
Curatorial Talk by Noa Bronstein
3:30 - 4:30 pm
BV340, Bladen Wing, University of Toronto Scarborough

Curator Noa Bronstein delivered a talk about the exhibition With an instinct for justice, featuring work by Shadi Harouni and Elise Rasmussen. This talk was part of the conference Debt of History, organized by the Department of English, University of Toronto Scarborough. Open to the public.


Saturday, May 5
With an instinct for justice Opening Reception
2 - 5 pm
Artists & curator talk 3 pm
Free shuttle bus from OCAD U (100 McCaul St) at 1:30 pm, returning at 4:30 pm, first come, first served

We celebrated the opening of With an instinct for justice with a public reception and casual talk/exhibition tour by artists Shadi Harouni and Elise Rasmussen, and curator Noa Bronstein.


Wednesday, May 2
House(hold) Opening Reception
6 - 8 pm
Cedar Ridge Gallery (225 Confederation Drive)
Co-presented by the DMG and Cedar Ridge Creative Centre

We celebrated the fifth annual U of T Scarborough student exhibition at Cedar Ridge Gallery, with the student curators and many of the student artists in attendance.