nuit blanche toronto 2022

A guide to Nuit Blanche 2022 in Toronto

Nuit Blanche 2022 is back in Toronto after a brief hiatus. This year's theme for the overnight art event is "The Space Between Us," with exhibits based on connections to places all "while bridging cultures and connecting communities and the environment."

This year's event will be the biggest one yet, expanding into neighbourhoods in Etobicoke and North York, in addition to downtown and Scarborough.

If you're planning to stay late into the night exploring all the exhibits, then make sure you dress for the brisk weather. The evening will be mainly cloudy, with temperatures dropping down to 8 C, with a 30 per cent chance of rain as of writing.

How it works

Artists and builders will start setting up their pieces during the day, some even the day before, but the evening filled with art technically doesn't start until 7:00 p.m. on October 1.

Once the clock hits the 19th hour, it's time to check out as many exhibits as you can, out of over 170 scattered all around the city from local, national and international artists.

The busiest time of the event is around 11:00 p.m. when most people start to flock into the city and lines start to fill. Around 2:00 a.m. is when many people start to head home. Most displays start to close down around 4:30 a.m. when most crowds have already left.

If you want to check out as many installations as possible without long lines, your best bet is to go around 3:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. when the festival ends. Most of the drunken-festival goers are fast asleep in their bed by this time so you won't have to deal with rowdy crowds and you'll have some peace and quiet checking out all the exhibits.

What to see

This year, Nuit Blanche has expanded into neighbourhoods in Etobicoke and North York. A bulk of the installations will be by the waterfront, Yonge Street, Colonel Samuel Smith Park, Mel Lastman Square and Albert Campbell Square.

See our list of the top 25 exhibits to check out this year

The event is also a good opportunity to check out other cultural institutions around the city if you've never been before, like the Aga Khan Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art and the Power Plant.

Although this event is not officially part of Nuit Blanche, Artscape Wychwood Barns is hosting an art night market filled with over 20 artisan vendors selling some of their best work. The night market will be filled with vendors, performances and exhibitions from 7:00 p.m through 11:00 p.m.

If you don't know where you should start your exploration for the night, head to one of the five event centres nearest you to grab a map and information from a volunteer. Or you can always just follow the hoards of people.

What to eat and drink

Since the night includes so much walking from exhibit to exhibit, you'll need some sustenance to keep you going through the night. There are more than enough spots around the city that will stay open late to satisfy your cravings.

Beside food trucks, you'll be able to get anything from pizza, sandwiches, breakfast food, burritos as well as grub from 24-hour restaurants.

Some bars will also have special permission to stay open and serve alcohol until 4:00 a.m. this year. Check the list here.

Getting around

With so many people heading out for the night, you can expect that travelling around the city will be a bit more hectic than usual.

There will be partial and full road closures in effect all weekend to ensure those attending the festival will be safe as they wander around the city streets. Road closures start as early as 9:00 p.m. on September 29 and end as late as 2:00 p.m. on October 2.

If you're not up for driving into all the chaos, no need to worry as the TTC will run all night long on all four subway lines.

Entry is free at North York Centre Station and Scarborough Centre Station from 7:00 p.m. on October 1 through 7:00 a.m. on October 2. You just have to remember to pick up a paper transfer at these stations for your proof-of-payment.

Before you head out for the night, make sure you have the event map on your phone to keep track of all the installations near you.

Remember to bundle up and have fun! Nuit Blanche is all about celebrating and exploring all the creatives in the city that make Toronto come to life.

Lead photo by

Jesse Milns


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