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Some new, some nostalgia: In/Future festival to transform Ontario Place

Art installations and stage performance among things planned for 11 days at Ontario Place, starting this weekend

After being closed for over five years, Ontario Place is set to host an art festival starting this weekend

Eduardo Lima/ Metro

After being closed for over five years, Ontario Place is set to host an art festival starting this weekend

Ontario Place is coming alive again.

For 11 days starting Thursday, more than 60 artists will cover the waterfront park with a variety of installations — ranging from from sculptures, photography and paintings — with a healthy mix of dancing and music by bands from around the world.

It’s part of the In/Future festival, which seeks to revitalize the landscape that’s been closed to the public since 2011.

“There will be a little something for everyone,” said festival founder and co-curator Layne Hinton.

People can choose from more than 45 musical and stage performances. Moviegoers can pick from a list of more 40 contemporary films plus an exclusive six vintage IMAX films made in the 1970s, some of which have never been seen anywhere else.

There will also be special workshops designed for kids and families, especially on the weekends.

“The entire 14-acre island just feels like a beautiful natural public park space, and that’s what we want to help people to explore,” Hinton said.

The emphasis has been on giving local artists and arts organizations a platform to showcase their talents on a bigger stage, she said, noting the majority of artists represent the GTA.

Organizers hope visitors will revive memories of how Ontario Place looked before it was closed, especially the multiculturalism that characterized programming at the facilities.

“It’ll probably feel familiar and nostalgic to some, but there’re definitely new animations and a different interpretation of art,” said Hinton. “This is a temporary transformation of the area, but I hope it’ll reflect what could happen in the future at the site.”

Ontario Place nostalgia

With the Ontario Place gates about to swing open for the first time in five years, Metro wants to capture some nostalgia. Send your favourite memories and pictures from the park to or tweet @MetroNewsCanada.  

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