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Up to this moment ...

Up To This Moment is a visual archive in the form of a public video installation in a Toronto light rail train station. Drawing archival materials from over 15 civic archives, including the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives and the Centre for Urban Ecology, the work documents civic transformation through 365 unique video loops, one for each day of a year-long cycle. The archive’s thematic arc follows the primary themes of Ovid’s Metamorphoses by linking each day of the week to its celestial Roman namesake – each weekday is dedicated to a particular motif of transformation. The videos presented on a large-scale screen form an archive itself, memorializing people and places that tell a different story from what is typically featured in the dominant or social media. Instead, the work celebrates the beauty of ordinary daily transformations: the intimacy of sharing a picnic with friends; the achievements of cooperative human labor that can move a building, a protest march that turns aggressive or is enlivened with levity and humour.

Framing the large-scale video installation is a mural depicting a collage of 16 English translations of the first stanza of Ovid’s Metamorphoses, a book from 8 AD about the importance of remembering that life resides in the movement between creation, destruction, and renewal. Local, intimate, and familiar minutia enjoy the honour of the epic poem, and hidden archival treasures are brought to the scale of spectacle, in Up to this moment. The work documents changes at the site of Kodak Heights, in the local community of Mt. Dennis and in the city of Toronto at large. (Text derived from the original winning proposal.)