Halifax Seaport gets en-lightened during Nocturne 2011

Nocturne: Art at Night is an annual festival bringing art and energy to the streets of Halifax between 6:00 p.m. and midnight on Saturday, October 15, 2011. The completely free event, now in its fourth year, showcases and celebrates the exciting visual arts scene in Halifax. The Nocturne program, map, and walking tours guide residents and visitors alike to a variety of exhibitions in galleries and public spaces throughout the city. The signature event, designed and planned by volunteers within the community, is an opportunity for everyone to experience the art of Halifax – in a whole new light.

Port Curatorial Committee (NS Centre for Craft & Design, Visual Arts Nova Scotia, NSCAD University, Halifax Seaport Farmers Market and Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21) projects listed below, activate the outdoor street corridor on the water side of Marginal Road between the  Farmers Market and Pier 21. In past years of Nocturne, this site has been extremely popular and is an anchor destination for Nocturne: Art at Night.

 Lantern Making: Retro Recycling, Nova Scotia Basketry Guild

Berry-box Lanterns are a little-known Halifax craft. In the 1950’s “Young folks” made these 3-dimensional lanterns with discarded wooden strawberry or raspberry boxes, a few wire twist ties and a real candle. Hung outside on the clothesline, they lit up summertime backyards. Strings of colourful surveyor tape were sometimes added to the corners as streamers! Sponsored by the NS Centre for Craft and Design, members of the Nova Scotia Basketry Guild will demonstrate and help you make your own berry-box lantern to take home at the Halifax Farmers’ Market. Image Attached: 09NSCCD_Nocturne Lantern copy.jpg

Tourists, Lukas Steinman

Tourists is a series of life-sized mechanical pop-ups. Each year, thousands of tourists drift into the Halifax Port, and for many, this corridor becomes their only point of contact to the city. With cameras drawn, the culture of the city is reduced to harbour-front kiosks, tallships and seagulls. A history is constructed through their lenses – only Halifax’s history is not in the residual artifacts, but in the individuals who leave those artifacts behind. Image Attached: 06LSteinman_Tropical-couple-color-crop.jpg

Candy-Coated, Mary-Anne Wensley

Walking in the vicinity of Marginal Road between Garrison Brewery and Pier 21, I will be wearing a coat of many gumballs and offering them up to passers-by.  A gumball, chosen by the recipient, will be extracted by cutting into the membrane and squeezing it out of the coat.  These gestures — offering a gumball, handing over scissors, cutting into the coat — are intimate exchanges.  This performance is in keeping with the mood of the carnival:  excessive consumption, absurd costuming, reveling in the street…it is playful and humorous, but the gestures associatively hint at something more sinister. Image Attached: 08MAWensley_Candy-Coated-Detail.jpg

World of Circus at the Seaport, Altantic Cirque

Experience the magic and mystique that is the World of Circus at the Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market outdoor stage, featuring an awe-inspiring performance series of belly-dancing, hula-hooping, fire-breathing interspersed with gravity-defying aerial ballet performed on trapeze, cerceau, fabric, rope and diamond, suspended 20 feet in the air.  In these unique, ethereal acts, the performer uses the apparatus to wrap, suspend, fall, swing, and spiral their body in an exciting display of strength, creativity and flexibility.  These performances will leave you “walking on air”!

The performance will take place circa the North End of Seaport Farmers’ Market, by the Samuel Cunard statue. Image Attached: 01atlantique_cirque.jpg

367 pages of Google search, Claire Hodge

This piece is a collection of all search results obtained by entering the words ‘Art Is’ in the Google search engine. The definitions range from absurd to predictable, from erudite to commonplace, from poetic to mundane. The scope of the responses yields intriguing insight in the many different and often-contradictory ideas people have about art and its purpose. However, this compilation re-imagines these separate speakers as a unified collective: out of many disparate voices, a chorus is created. The piece also highlights how the internet, by providing a level playing field for all opinions, has a role in redefining our conception of authority and knowledge. The democratic ideal of the web is both celebrated and questioned.

Migrant Sounds, Gerard Choy

 The genesis of this project lies in phrase books written in the late 19th and early 20th centuries for Cantonese migrants to North America. The phrase books contained English words and sentences that were transcribed into English-sounding Cantonese words, making unfamiliar sounds familiar, the alien closer to home. The installation highlights this negotiation with English through a selection of classic movie lines and their transcriptions into Cantonese sounds. Next to a muted video loop of each scene, the phonetic transcription of the classic line into Cantonese words that approximate English sounds is projected and the audience is invited to work out these classic lines in this manner, experiencing how migrants would have wrestled with a new linguistic and sound environment. Image Attached: 03GChoy_MigrantSounds.jpg

Chalk Walk, Jason Skinner

Chalk Walk is a long processional mural that unfolds throughout the night on the paved spaces that run along Marginal Road. Using a combination of glow-in-the-dark chalk and chalk pastel the mural-trail flows organically from the Garrison Brewery to the Railcar before Pier 21, directing spectators through other Nocturne events in the area. The trail progresses, as does the subject matter, drawing from the commercial, cultural and historical significances of the space. Image Attached: 04jSkinner_chalkwalk.jpg

3 Halifax Icons, Marie Koehler

Three Halifax locations are instantly recognizable to people living in Halifax – George’s Island, The Halifax Public Gardens and Citadel Hill. Global warming is a personal issue for each of us in Atlantic Canada; there is no escaping it and only a small chance of ameliorating it if we act now. A projected metre rise in sea levels means coastal communities must move and rebuild. Our economy will collapse. Where we have always had an abundance of fresh water, we will experience drought, famine and social disorder. 3 Halifax Icons is a video projection showing in the windows of the Halifax Farmers Market and shows the beginning of the environmental disorder. Image Attached: 07MKoehler_3HalifaxIcons_GeorgesIsland.jpg

Interactive Sculptures in Clay: Coiling & Hand-Building, NS Potters Guild

 You’re invited to roll up your sleeves, add a coil or two, and decorate one of four large sculptural vessels that will emerge organically as the night evolves. Members of the Nova Scotia Potters’ Guild will demonstrate throwing and offer guidance on the use of stamps, textures and surface design options at the Nova Scotia Centre for Craft and Design (NSCCD) at 1096 Marginal Road. See our ceramic studio in action and join the creative process of sculpting in clay. Photos of the completed pieces will be shared with interested participants shortly after Nocturne concludes. Images Attached: 10NSCCD_claysculpture_conceptdrawing.jpg


Port Curatorial Committee:



The Port Curatorial Committee would like to thank:


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4 Responses to Halifax Seaport gets en-lightened during Nocturne 2011

  1. David Tiller says:

    Where may obtain event walking tour and map information? Is it downloadable. Thanks.

  2. The Nocturne event projects, tours, maps are all located on the Nocturne website at http://nocturnehalifax.ca/event and Nocturne has an iPhone App, too. Visual Arts Nova Scotia also has program guides for pick-up at 1113 Marginal Road.

  3. Pingback: Call for Proposals: Halifax Seaport Nocturne Anchor Zone 2012 | Visual Arts Nova Scotia

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