The Queen West Art Crawl is Here!

This weekend is Artscapes' annual and insanely huge Queen West Art Crawl. Stretching from the 401 Richmond building all the way to Roncesvales Ave., Queen St. will be host to the creative works of over 300 artists in various venues at all hours of the day and night, and for the most part it's FREE.

The 'Crawl' begins tonight at the Gladstone Hotel featuring the debut screening of Christina Zeidler's 'Show Me Yours', 9 artists who 'Do It At The Gladstone' and 'The Transformative Movement' in the Art Bar. Those with a few extra bucks, ($15.00) can also take in Convergence Theatre's Fringe Festival Hit, Variations 1 & 2, the site-specific historic journey staged in the hotel's rooms and alleys.

As for the rest of the weekend, I recommend a battle plan and the official Crawl guide (available everywhere on Queen St.). However here is a brief sample of what you can expect.

Trinity Bellwoods Park

Be prepared to spend some serious time in Trinity Bellwoods Park there are 250 artists in the Outdoor Art Show and Sale, the top-40 beats of the Boy Choir of Lesbos, a bike pimping workshop, Zombie Tag and walking tours with local personalities.

Bizarre and interactive performances will also be on-going throughout Saturday and Sunday between 11am and 6pm. Tanya Mars will be pushing the boundaries with a non-stop stream of consciousness of everything she's ever wanted and never got, she is also providing buckets of water so that you can try and shut her up. And W.A. Davison is expected to be wandering around recording the park from his shoes. Check the website for the full-list of performers, locations and times.

And be on the look-out for The Movement Movement and Jessica Rose who will be marking the neighborhood with a 200-meter footpath.

CAMH Campus

Creative on Queen takes over the front lawn of CAMH with the 8th annual Being Scene Art Show and Exhibition, back dropped by non-stop entertainment from The Delorians, PARC's Afro-Caribbean drummers, performances from the St. Christopher House Music School and "much more." Organic produce and tasty baked treats from CAMH community partners Houselink and Sunshine Garden will also be for sale. 10 am - 4pm Saturday only.


In the Play/Grounds of Parkdale you can embark on a nook and cranny expedition for Katie Bethune-Leamen's mysterious mushrooms, dare yourself to explore the Salvation Army lit-up under black lights, "illuminating things ordinarily invisible to the unaided eye" all the while basking in atomized perfume fragrances misted throughout the neighborhood.

If you're not entirely up for adventure, you can play a little game of duck-duck-goose or hang out with the friendly bus stop attendant. For those who "don't want to go home after the game[s]" on Saturday night, you are invited to loiter with a cold beer in the parking lot of the Rhino to take in some "performance mayhem" at the tailgatecrasher party.

Queen St. Highlights

Good Catch Dear Diary Craft Fair at 1556 Queen St. W. The spawn of the Toronto and Montreal's torrid and secret love affair, this craft show promises nothing short of weird pleasures. 12-5pm Saturday only

Indulge yourself and savor a sweet while you check out the Pirate Co-Op's, Black Ops and Lollipops exhibition at Dufflet Pastries (787 Queen St.), featuring work by the staff. Friday and Saturday 10am-7pm, Sunday 12-6pm.

Chill out in the Artscape garden at 900 Queen St and listen to the Blues by acoustic duos Trouble and Strife and Up the Line. Saturday and Sunday 3-6pm

For a complete listing of events and artists visit www.torontoartscape.on.ca.

If only Queen St. was car free for the weekend, it would be perfect.

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