Thauberger + Kite’s installation Call to Arms features audio and video recordings of their rehearsals with Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) York band in advance of a live performance of four musical scores by Kite during the Biennial’s opening weekend in addition to the band’s own repertoire. Boasting the country’s only conch shell sextet, the band will play in the drill hall housed within the Navy’s “stone ship,” a highly resonant space that is itself played like an instrument.

Commissioned by the Toronto Biennial of Art and presented in partnership with HMCS York. Made possible with the generous support of Partners in Art and Ann and Harry Malcolmson.

Althea Thauberger + Kite were the recipients of an Honourable Mention prize for their work commissioned for the Toronto Biennial of Art. 


The practice of artist and filmmaker Althea Thauberger (born in Saskatoon, SK, Canada; lives in Vancouver, BC, Canada) is primarily concerned with the use of performative and collaborative processes in social documentary forms. Thauberger’s local and international projects involve long-term negotiations, co-operations, and collaborations with individuals, communities, and institutions. Currently, Thauberger is Assistant Professor in the Department of Art History, Visual Art & Theory at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver.

Kite a.k.a. Suzanne Kite (Oglála Lakȟóta, born in Sylmar, CA, USA; lives in Montreal, QC, Canada) is a performance artist, visual artist, and composer. She is a graduate of Bard MFA Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Annandale-on-Hudson and a PhD candidate at Concordia University, Montreal. Kite is also a Research Assistant for the Initiative for Indigenous Futures and a 2019 Trudeau Scholar. Her research is concerned with contemporary Lakota epistemologies through research-creation, computational media, and performance practice.

Exhibition Site

Small Arms Inspection Building

Small Arms Inspection Building was originally part of a large munitions plant built in 1940 before it was acquired and renovated as an art centre by the City of Mississauga in 2018. With its female dominated workforce, Small Arms Limited manufactured thousands of rifles daily for the Canadian and Allied forces in WWII. In 1990, the TRCA conducted an environmental audit of the site, revealing the presence of polychlorinated biphenyl, volatile organic compounds, and combustible gases across nineteen acres. More than 70,000 tons of contaminated radioactive soil was removed to eventually transform the Arsenal Lands into a park.

1352 Lakeshore Road East
Mississauga ON
L5E 1E9