Culture Days is a national celebration of arts and culture. At the end of each September, millions of people attend thousands of participatory arts and culture events across the country. Culture Days programs invite the public to get hands-on and behind-the-scenes to highlight the importance of arts and culture in our communities. This year the celebrations have been extended to a 4-week run, under the thematic lens of Unexpected Intersections—encouraging creative and outside-the-box thinking to reveal new avenues of discovery, learning, and expression.

what’s on // virtual activities

NFB Short Animations

Dinner for Two by Janet Perlman

1996 | 7 min

When it comes to conflict, even chameleons won’t change! Peace in the rain forest is disrupted when two chameleons literally get stuck in a conflict, with catastrophic results. Relationships are severed, opportunities are lost, innocent bystanders are harmed and violence seems imminent. Luckily for the lizards, a frog observing the fracas turns into exactly what they need – no, not a prince – a mediator.

Dinner for Two tackles conflict in a lively, humorous and provocative way. It shows that amidst the chaos that differences create, there are still paths to reconciliation.

Soup of the Day by Lynn Smith

2013 | 3 min

This animated short presents a dilemma faced by a couple every time they go out to eat. Will their culinary differences douse the flames of romance, or will love prevail? Set to a rollicking doo-wop song by Canadian songwriter Alexander (Zander) Ary, the film brings Lynn Smith’s gouache paintings to life as she animates directly under the camera. This short is a tasty comic narrative that skips along an array of tantalizing dishes. Vocalists Susie Arioli and Zander Ary each bring a unique interpretation to this funny, charming song.

Performances by Simcoe Contemporary Dancers

Simcoe Contemporary Dancers presents their first ever virtual Culture Days performance! Enjoy SCD’s presentation of pieces from their repertoire, a structured improvisation inspired by Sorel Etrog’s Anatomy of Tension and a brief interactive workshop where you will learn choreographic tools to create your very own dance!

Dactyl (2014)

Performers: Jaqui Brown, Chrissy Baxter, and Shelby Thoms

Choreographer: Sarah Lochhead

Threnody (2015)

Performer: Eliza Pinney
Choreographer: Sarah Lochhead

Family Sunday Online Workshop

Palimpsest Postcards

Instructed by Tyler Durbano

In this special video workshop, families will explore visual texture by using drawing and collage to create a multi-layered artwork on cardstock paper—that can be shared with friends and family.

All Family Sundays Online workshops are free and can be completed with materials that are commonly found at home. Ideal for parents and caregivers with children ages 3 to 8 years.

Virtual Tours of Current Exhibitions

Installation view of Sorel Etrog: Anatomy of Tension, MacLaren Art Centre, 2020. Photo: Tyler Durbano

Sorel Etrog: Anatomy of Tension

Curated by Noor Alé

Drawn from the MacLaren’s Permanent Collection, this exhibition presents works on paper by Romanian-born Israeli-Canadian artist Sorel Etrog (1933–2014). Etrog was a survivor of Nazi Germany’s occupation of Romania. Anatomy of Tension explores the artist’s interests in the paradoxical forces that characterize our human condition—freedom and bondage, movement and stasis, hope and despair—offering quiet ruminations on the human psyche.

Installation view of The Uncanny Outdoors, MacLaren Art Centre, 2020. Photo: Tyler Durbano

The Uncanny Outdoors

Curated by Emily McKibbon

The Uncanny Outdoors presents contemporary Canadian artworks from the MacLaren’s Permanent Collection that render the natural world strange. The uncanny nature of each work emphasizes the ways in which our understanding of the landscape is conditioned by how we enjoy, settle and extract value from it.

With support from: