lines of sight: toronto observation

As part of the multidisciplinary commitment of Subtle Technologies, the already mentioned screenings, a performance held on the rooftop patio of the Beaver Hall artists’ cooperative at the foot of McCaul Street,  an exhibition at the Hotshot gallery, as well as a speed dating fro artists and scientists animated the three nights of the festival.

A conceptually complex performance, the “Toronto Observation,” curated by Willy LeMaitre and featuring Annie Onyi Cheung, Kika Thorn and Claudia Wittman, turned out to be minimal in its execution, and light in terms of the technologies used. the performance drew attention to the invisibility of city: for us living our lives inside it, it is almost unnoticeable, but what if we can observe it through a privileged position and by seizing some unnoticed details when directed by the performers? located on the top of a condo building, three cameras pointed towards three different directions. the images captures were then screened in three TV sets. the spectator would look for, and observe the artist staging a performance, standing in a specific position or just not being there in each of these TV sets. In turn, the cameras capturing the scenes were not too far to prevent the spectator from observing the same scenes with their naked eyes. in this way, the spectator had several opportunities to observe the whole neighborhood from above, the scenes and the surrounding environments in their natural, unfiltered form, and the same scenes magnified and filtered through the surveillance device.

above : 3 different perspectives: TV view, park view and general view
Below: view from the top and street level view 

A commentary on the city, the performance evoked much wider discourses about the predictability of view, the surprise that could be brought simply by looking at one specific item from a different angle and the transformation that this item can undergo when modified by the intervention of an individual or by an unexpected event. the performance also spoke to the entire festival, as a lot of presentations and projects presented in these days often reflected on the same lines of flights underscored by the performance, that is on the effects brought by the introduction of a different perspective, or to the need to recognize the added value that can be brought by a different discipline or by the artist/researcher.