The Toronto Biennial of Art acknowledges the land upon which our event takes place, in multiple venues across the city, stretching from the Small Arms Inspection Building in Mississauga in the West, to the Port Lands in the East, from Harbourfront Centre in the South, to the Art Gallery of York University in the North.
We acknowledge, first and foremost, that all of these spaces are located on land that has been a site of human activity for more than 12,000 years. This land is the traditional territory of the Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee, and Anishinaabe peoples, including the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. Their stories, beliefs, and concepts about the land and the water continue to guide and inspire us.
We acknowledge the individual histories and knowledge that every participant, colleague, guest, and visitor brings with them to the Biennial. With more than ninety participants from around the world, and potentially tens of thousands of people taking part to witness their work and their words, we are thankful for the teachings and wisdom that each person carries, passed down to them through generations of ancestors.
We acknowledge our physical surroundings, from the many buildings and outdoor spaces that house our exhibition and events, to all that lies beneath, including the rocks, soil, bugs, and root systems. We recognize the many lost rivers below us that vein across the city, continually moving water south. These rivers connect us all, physically and psychically, to the lake.
We acknowledge the trees that surround the sites, tracing the root systems up towards the surface, as well as the grass, plants, insects, and animals that live beside us, sharing the city and the lake. This expansive constellation of beings, both human and not, are always in relation, and we thank them all for being here.
Finally, we direct our intentions to the sky. We acknowledge the clouds, moon, sun, and stars whose light has made this fantastic journey across space and time.