Below the City / 2019 Nuit Blanche Toronto

74% of Scarborough residents are visible minorities compared to 39% of Toronto centre. We are what makes Toronto multicultural. Witness us.

Below the City at Nuit Blanche Toronto 2019 celebrated Scarborough for what it really is—a dynamic and vibrant place built on a continuum of migration. Overshadowed by the urban centre, the suburbs are often considered plain and lackluster, with downtown credited for Toronto’s source of culture and diversity. But, inside our quiet houses, tucked away in plazas and along our roads are new ideas and activities drawn from diverse backgrounds.

Migration is not the start and end of a journey, but a collection of experiences and values that evolve through generations. Lee recognized Scarborough as a unique cultural hub by creating a larger-than-life 250-foot long continuous vinyl mesh installation. Durable and low-cost, vinyl is commonly used as signage for its mobility and adaptability. Using this as metaphor, Lee blended personal photographs of Scarborough with those from the community to bear witness to Scarborough as source of cultural inspiration for today’s Toronto.

This project was supported by the Toronto Arts Council and Ontario Arts Council

Interview with Esmond Lee on CBC Metro Morning with Matt Galloway. Released: Oct 4, 2019.
Behind the Scenes Production, 2019

Behind the Scenes Production, 2019

Scarborough photo collage
‘Below the City’, Nuit Blanche 2019 Marketing Image
Nuit Blanche Installation Signage