The Don River Valley Park Art Program is where art meets the natural environment.
The series of temporary public artworks along the Don River creates a new hub for art in Toronto. Local, national and international artists have created projects that speak to the many histories and present-day realities of the ravine and its surrounding communities - looking at the land from ecological, cultural, industrial and Indigenous perspectives.
Throughout the series, visitors may come across sculptural installations, murals, billboards and dance or sound performances. Each project has its own timeline, with some lasting many years and others for just a day. We also offer talks, walks and research workshops lead by artists.
We see the possibility in connecting the public to this landscape through art. Return again and again to find new commissions and events unfolding.
Curator: Kari Cwynar
Advisory Committee: Michelle Koerner (chair), Rui Amaral, Rebecca Carbin, Catherine Dean, An Te Liu, Barbara Macdonald, Marianne McKenna, Alissa North, Elisa Nuyten, Frances Price, Laura Rapp, Kitty Scott, Brenda Webster, Robin Young
“When I started, I thought the art program would occupy an intersection between art and ecology but it quickly became clear that I couldn’t think about ecology only in the biological or environmental sense; the Don is an ecology that also includes Indigenous histories, industrial histories, cultural histories, neighborhood uses, recreational uses, the material remains of city-building, long-standing communities of regular inhabitants—all those things have come to make the Don what it is now. And the artists we’ve been working with are all very excited to think through these diverse uses and contexts.”
— Kari Cwynar, curator of the Don River Valley Park Art Program in Canadian Art 2018
Current & Upcoming Projects
Virginia Overton: Built
Until December 2019, Virginia Overton's sculptural installation will be featured along the Lower Don Trail and at the Evergreen Brick Works site.
Will Kwan: A Park for All
Will Kwan's text installation stretches the lengths of the industral retaining walls of the Don River.
Duane Linklater: Monsters for Beauty, Permanence and Individuality
Artist Duane Linklater initiated the Don River Valley Park Art Program with a striking installation of cast concrete gargoyles on the Lower Don Trail.
Gareth Long: Travels with Two Donkeys in the Valley
Join the conversation as artist Gareth Long cares for two donkeys in the Don River Valley Park, taking them for short walks along the Trail.
Life of a Craphead: King Edward VII Equestrian Statue Floating Down the Don
In Oct–Nov 2017, performance artists Life of a Craphead gave a series of performances in which they dropped a life-size replica statue of King Edward VII into the Lower Don River.
Maria Hassabi: STAGING - undressed
On July 7 and 8, 2017, the Don River Valley Park Art Program presented STAGING - undressed, a new live installation work by acclaimed New York-based artist Maria Hassabi.