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The things they carried curated by Tairone BastienInternational Dumpling Festival, 2018

Bindy Sangeet, Employee of the Month, 1989
Photo: Courtesy of Ken Lum

Ken Lum - Vancouver, Canada / Philadelphia, USA

International Dumpling Festival is a street-side public food court serving dumplings in multiple ethnic variations. Dumplings are found in cuisines around the world, many of which are represented in Toronto’s diverse food scene. Lum collaborated with seven Toronto food vendors to curate a menu of dumplings and other fare, including Jamaican patties, Finnish pies, Tibetan momos, Colombian empanadas and Polish pierogis.

Accompanying the kiosks will be banners made by Lum that represent the vendors and their food, building off from the artist’s ongoing investigation of portraiture, language, and the public memorialization of marginalized communities. The proprietors will also be present at times throughout the evening to engage with audiences and share stories about their dumplings, their businesses and themselves.

The work is sited on James Street, a street that was once part of the Ward, a 19th-century enclave for the city’s first Irish, Italian, Jewish, Black and Chinese communities. This area was home to a variety of ethnic cafes and delis, which were eradicated in the mid-20th century. International Dumpling Festival brings some of these foods—and the stories behind them—temporarily back to the neighbourhood.

The art is free, as always at Nuit Blanche; the food is for purchase. Lines are expected. Food will be served until supply lasts, the art is there for the entire night.

Born and raised in Vancouver, Ken Lum is presently chair of the Department of Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He has widely exhibited for over 30 years, including at Documenta 11, the Venice Biennale, the Shanghai Biennale and the Whitney Biennial. Lum is also an active writer and curator. A book of his writings is due out from Concordia University Press in early 2019. He was co-curator of the Sharjah Biennial 7, Shanghai Modern: 1919–1945 and Monument Lab (2017).

Interactive Installation


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

James Street & Queen Street

Suitable for all ages

This project is outdoors.