Art Toronto the First Fair to Commission AR Experience in North America

Canada's largest art fair returns with a groundbreaking hybrid presentation model

Art Toronto

​​​On Oct. 28 - Nov. 8, 2020, for the first time in its 21 years, the fair will showcase virtual and in-person installations and programming across the country. Traditionally occupying a single location, Art Toronto will take place online and nationwide in art galleries across Canada. This unique model is the first of its kind in North America for international art fairs that have quickly adapted to online exhibitions. Another North American first, the fair commissions an Augmented Reality artwork named Eros’ Kiss, which will be available for download to the public through Instagram and Facebook, launching on Oct. 15, 2020. 

Represented by ELLEPHANT (Montréal), Canadian artist Jenn E Norton was commissioned to create the social filter using time-based media that is immersive and experiential, reframing familiar objects, landscapes, and activities as dreamlike occurrences. Norton’s work explores the blurring boundaries of virtual and physical realms, akin to the format the fair is taking this year.

As Canada’s largest art fair, Art Toronto continues to focus on showcasing indigenous talent, such as provocateur Cree artist, Kent Monkman, on the importance of artist publications with Art Institute. Also virtually, The Ábadakone catalogue launch will include a conversation with Sasha Suda (Director) and Greg Hill (Senior Curator, Indigenous Art), presented by the National Gallery of Canada. Métis artist Christi Belcourt and Anishinaabe/Ojibwe artist Bonnie Divine will be in conversation with Curator Sarah Milroy of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. Lastly, for the curious eye, do not miss a virtual studio visit of Kinngait Studios in Cape Dorset, Nunavut, where some of the most iconic Inuit imagery has been produced.  

“It’s exciting to collaborate with so many exhibitors presenting the work of Métis, First Nations and Inuit artists in all media – an essential part of Canadian culture. Art Toronto embraces the opportunity to showcase indigenous art and use the fair as a vehicle to support our collective change, healing and growth through sharing these artists’ imagery and stories,” says Mia Nielsen, Director of Art Toronto. “With this new model, we will be expanding our audience access, reach and knowledge of the work of First Nations artists, across the country through exhibiting galleries and internationally through the virtual fair platform ” 

For those looking for a break from the digital experience, activations will take place in major cities across the country. For Toronto, a mini popup at Stephen Bulger Gallery in Toronto will house multiple galleries from across Canada in one space. Exhibitors include Pierre-François Ouellette Art Contemporain (Montréal), Michael Gibson Gallery (London, ON), TrépanierBaer Gallery (Calgary), and WAAP (Vancouver), all showcasing exhibitions for a limited time during the fair. Across the country, Montreal’s Galerie Hugues Charbonneau will host a conversation between artist Manuel Mathieu and Musée des Beaux Arts Contemporary Art Curator Sylvie Lacerte. Inquisitive observers can tune into a talk and tattooing session with Calgary gallerist Jarvis Hall and artist Marigold Santos. In Vancouver, Equinox Gallery will be leading in-person tours of their solo show with Shawn Hunt. ​

To celebrate the launch of the fair, Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) will be hosting their first-ever Virtual Preview event on October 28 from noon to midnight. Tickets are available for $30.00 and provide a first look at the fair as well as exclusive interviews, thought-provoking talks, and studio visits featuring Brendan Fernandes, Françoise Sullivan, Shary Boyle, and Rajni Perera as well as a DJ set by Toronto artist and Club Quarantine co-founder Casey MQ. Also, Art Toronto Virtual Preview attendees will have the exclusive opportunity to purchase limited edition prints by Alexa Hatanaka and Jah Grey. These events will be live online and only available to those who attend the event; tickets can be purchased here.

Art Toronto supporters include:
Principal Sponsor: RBC

Lead Partners: Canadian Art, AGO, Canada Goose, JDJ Jewellery

Founded in 2000, Art Toronto is Canada’s international fair for modern and contemporary art. Attracting esteemed galleries, artists and art-lovers from across the globe, the fair is the most important annual art event in Canada. Now in its 21st year, Art Toronto evolves with the times to create virtual and physical installations nationwide to represent important artwork from leading Canadian galleries. For more information, visit

Please find the full 2020 exhibitor list here.

Visit or follow Art Toronto on  Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

For further information and interview opportunities, please contact:
Art Toronto
Mark Savoia
Marketing and Communications Manager
416 960 4513

Burstyn Inc.
Hana Price
Account Manager
416 903 9763  ​

Source: Art Toronto