As with other site specific exhibitions commissioned by Public Access, Janine Marchessault and Michael Prokopow will work closely with the artists in the exhibition to support their projects. L.O.T. Collective has done extensive background research on Willowdale (history and demographics) and artists will be given these materials. We have been careful to combine experienced artists with emerging artists, as well as artists working in different media which is integral to the interdisciplinary ecology the exhibition wishes to explore.
The organizers recognize that a key component to the success of Leona Drive is a strongly articulated curatorial vision that anchors the exhibition in its particular locality without being parochial. The organizers are committed to creating events and daily tours of the exhibition that involve the residents of Willowdale as well the larger Toronto and Canadian community. We wish to educate the public about new art forms (locative, architectural, intermedial and performative) that are intrinsic aspects of our daily lives. The exhibition will host a symposium both downtown at Ryerson University and at the Toronto Centre for the Arts on Yonge Street. This symposium will be concerned with questions of site, liminality, the interstitial nature of suburban existence, architecture, taste, memory, ennui, white flight, emigration, development and the future of neighborhoods. This conference will invite papers from scholars, artists, architects, urban planners and others who are interested in the pressing question of the suburban past, present and future. The journal Public: Art/Culture/Ideas is committed to publishing the proceedings of the conference as well as a color catalogue of the exhibition. The exhibition will also receive technical support from the Future Cinema Lab at York University which has committed to providing all of the audio-visual equipment (projectors and locative media) as well technical support for the project.
As with Public Access's Being on Time (2001) exhibition which worked with students from Central Technical High School, Leona Drive will involve students from the Earl Haig Secondary School in the area. Students will work with artists and help out with the installation as well as some of the guided tours of the exhibition. There will be daily tours of the site as well as artist talks at the site and at the high school as well as evening projections on the houses. Members of both Public Access and LOT: Experiments in Urban Research have extensive networks within the academic and art communities that will be drawn into the exhibition and its dynamic calendar of activities which will certainly highlight issues related to development, dwelling and the city.