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Dream Time: We All Have Stories curated by Karen AlexanderPreserved, 2018

Preserved (rendering), 2018

Gayle Chong Kwan - London, United Kingdom

Preserved is an immersive photographic installation made of collages of the buildings in early immigrant neighbourhoods, including London’s Limehouse, New York’s Little Italy and Toronto’s Ward. The collages are seemingly preserved in salt, and enlarged to theatrical set-design proportions.

The legacy of immigrants is crucial to the character of numerous cities, but with changing global economic, spatial and population pressures, many of the earliest immigrant neighbourhoods around the world are on the verge of being lost. Preserved will explore the passage of time, the representation of identity, and the slippages and connections between the local and international through the impact of immigrants on cities. In the installation, Chong Kwan links salt with the preservation of memory—through its role in the early photographic process of salt prints, its use in food preservation and in the legacy of decommissioned salt mines now being used as secure repositories for historic artifacts and national documents.

This installation will be in the underground parkade beneath City Hall’s Nathan Phillips Square, highlighting and bringing together the lost traces of immigrants in cities around the world to the site of Toronto’s own diverse (and long since paved over) Ward district.

Gayle Chong Kwan is a British artist whose sculptural and photographic installations, public realm works and ritual sensory events are exhibited internationally. Chong Kwan explores simulacra and the sublime through reconsidered pasts, alternative presents and imagined futures. Her work is held in private and public collections, and she has participated in the Venice Biennale, Havana Biennale and Asia-Pacific Biennale Berlin. She is the recipient of numerous awards and is undertaking a PhD at the Royal College of Art.

Photography Installation


STYLL We All Have Stories The things they carried Major Institutions Independent Projects Experiential Activations Event Centre

City Hall - Green P Parking Garage, Bay Street ramp

100 Queen Street West

Suitable for all ages

This project is indoors.