Celebrating Indigenous Voices at Canadian Chroma

Cadillac Fairview

Reshaping Toronto's Retail Landscape with Indigenous Artistry, MASSIVart, and Cadillac Fairview’s Eaton Centre

Public Art Consulting & Retail

Artistic Activation

Curation - Art Production - Project Management

Celebrating Indigenous Voices at Canadian Chroma | MASSIVart - Artistic Activation

In 2023, Nordstrom’s departure from the Canadian retail landscape left Toronto’s Eaton Centre with a gap for interim space activation and programming. Seizing the opportunity to transform this large, vacated space, Cadillac Fairview created Canadian Chroma with the aim to reinvigorate the Eaton Centre shopping experience. Cadillac Fairview’s vision to integrate an interactive and engaging component in the exhibit while showcasing the rich tapestry of Canadian artistry led them to MASSIVart.

Acting as a strategic partner in this project, MASSIVart curated and managed the production of the Indigenous Art Showcase in Canadian Chroma. Featuring seven established and emerging Indigenous artists, this activation seamlessly blends interactive art, cutting-edge technology and diverse Indigenous voices into the space.

The Curatorial Approach, Celebrating Diversity and Representation

Emphasizing diversity and representation, each artist was selected based on their geographical origins, spanning the West Coast, Prairies, and Ontario. Wanting to explore the theme of “Indigenous Futurism” was pivotal in the showcase, as it invites viewers to expand perceptions of Indigenous art, emphasizing positivity and empowerment.

Having worked with her before, Mariah Meawasige, whose primary focus is on collaborating to projects that are indigenous-led or contribute to indigenous well-being and futurity, designed the original landscape. Once the template was completed, each artist was invited to reimagine the landscape. Known for innovating within their respective styles, Kaya Joan, Aeden Corey, Joshua Steckley, Emily Kewageshig, Eliot White-Hill, and Casey Koyczan created unique pieces that manifested in digital pieces that celebrated their identities and Indigenous heritage.

These artworks were then shifted onto seven interactive touch screens. When visitors swipe one of these screens, they gain the ability to craft their own distinctive compositions by mixing and matching elements from the artists’ works to form a unique piece of their own.

“Reimagined Landscapes” in Canadian Chroma provides an invaluable platform for Indigenous artists, allowing them to amplify their voices and share their narratives with a wide and diverse audience. With the Eaton Centre welcoming nearly 50 million visitors annually, this installation serves as a launching pad for emerging talents and offers them exposure and recognition. Furthermore, the project is a meaningful contribution to ongoing Truth and Reconciliation efforts in Canada, as it fosters a deeper understanding of Indigenous art and culture, advancing important dialogues.

For Cadillac Fairview, Canadian Chroma creates a multi-sensorial journey celebrating Canadian culture through sight, sound, and colour. MASSIVart’s involvement in projects like the “Reimagined Landscape” further cements our dedication to meaningful public art and placemaking, where spaces can be transformed into immersive, interactive, and thought-provoking experiences that resonate with the public. Through such initiatives, MASSIVart believes that placemaking and art are powerful tools that can revitalize underutilized public spaces in a range of spaces, including retail shopping mall environments.