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Dream Time: We All Have Stories

Located within the boundaries of the former Ward district including Nathan Phillips Square, Toronto City Hall, the Church of the Holy Trinity and the Toronto Coach Terminal.

Curated by Karen Alexander, this exhibition features eight projects.

Karen Alexander

Curatorial Statement

Dream Time: We All Have Stories is a shared investigation and meditation on the geographic area of Toronto known as the Ward. The hazy time between sleep and wakefulness presents a playground of possibilities; here, the unequal past and present histories will be dissected, reclaimed and projected through a lens keenly focused on curiosity and inclusion.

Inspired by the city’s latent memories of immigration, gay rights, housing, economic development, colonization and the ongoing struggle for self-definition and self-determination, these eight artworks will oscillate between ideas of the local and the international as they transform and activate spaces and places in and around City Hall. Using performance, photography, video installation and spatial intervention, the boundaries and borders of nationality, and of collective and historical memory, will be questioned and probed—not to find the “one story,” but to expose many related and intersecting narratives.

For one night only, the local and transcultural will dovetail and flow between various historic and architectural locations in an exchange of intimate and public languages. Audiences will be invited to explore and plot multi-directional routes across the margins of place, memory and history.

— Karen Alexander


Karen Alexander is an independent curator, educator and writer based in London. She has worked for the British Film Institute and regularly writes on the cinema of the Black diaspora. She curated Whip It Good: Spinning From History’s Filthy Mind with artist Jeannette Ehlers in 2015 and the Black Atlantic Cinema Club with Autograph ABP in 2016. In 2014, Karen founded Curating Conversations, a peer-led professional development project. In 2017, she co-founded Philomela's Chorus, a moving-image commissioning and exhibition platform for women of colour.

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