Goll & Nielsen, Niagara Falls Artist Host Program

2 December 2004 - 18 December 2004
Opening Reception 6 April 2023 12am

Goll & Nielsen
Niagara Falls Artist Host Program

Opening night Artist Talk by Goll & Nielsen, 7 PM

Niagara Falls Artist Host Program is a community interactive art project developed specifically for Mercer Union by the Copenhagen and Los Angeles-based artist-curator collective, Goll & Nielsen. In light of the challenges posed by migration in the era of capitalist globalization and the ways Western countries have responded to these by a continuous tightening of their immigration, integration, and asylum policies, Goll & Nielsen will create an artist host program for artists and art workers new and old to the Toronto art scene.

Niagara Falls Artist Host Program is dedicated to establishing lasting professional friendships between artists with an immigrant/refugee background and their Canadian colleagues. Such friendships can facilitate newcomers’ participation in the Toronto art communities. The program matches volunteering Canadian artists/art workers (hosts) with artists new to the Toronto art scene (guests) on an one-on-one basis. It is our goal to match host with guest so that both will benefit from the cross-cultural exchange and supportive friendship. Newcomers are provided with access to important networks, while Canadian artists/art workers gain knowledge of other working models and practices. The program enables a two-way integration process in which both host and guest adjust to each other for the enrichment of the Toronto art communities.

Niagara Falls Artist Host Program will set up its office in Mercer Union’s front gallery for the duration of the show. Here visiting audiences and volunteering guests/hosts can receive program orientation through personal interviews, an instructional video, and exhibition displays. Goll & Nielsen will also organize talks on the topic of Canadian Immigration, Integration, and Repatriation Laws. The main and back galleries are reserved for the matched guests and hosts to mount exhibitions, organize events, conferences, social gatherings, etc. On December 18 – the closing day of the exhibition – Goll & Nielsen invite all guests and hosts to join us on a one-day bus excursion to Niagara Falls, Ontario’s symbol of love and site of deportation. To accommodate the broadest
possible audience, Mercer Union will expand its operating hours to include Sunday.

The program is a pilot project. If it proves to be successful, Goll & Nielsen will make arrangements for its continuation in Toronto and elsewhere.

Niagara Falls Artist Host Program constitutes Goll & Nielsen’s first exhibition in Canada. The program is funded by: Mercer Union, A Centre for Contemporary Art; The Danish Art Council; Habourfront Center as part of SUPERDANISH; and Woolfitt’s Art Supplies.

To receive more information on the program or to participate as a host or guest contact Goll & Nielsen at:

Mercer Union

37 Lisgar Street

Toronto, ON, Canada M6J 3T3

T: 416.536.1519

E: artisthostprogram@hotmail.com

PDF Application Form: niagara.pdf
(Requires Acrobat Reader)

Exhibition dates: December 2 – 18, 2004.
Opening reception: December 2, 8 pm.

Artist talk: December 2, 7 pm.

Hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 11 am – 6 pm from December 2 – 18, 2004.


Talks and round table discussions organized by Goll & Nielsen take place Fridays from 7 – 9 pm or Saturdays from 2 – 4 pm.

Temporary exhibitions, performances, events, conferences, and social gatherings organized by the matched guests and hosts take place Sundays from 2 – 4 pm.

Thursday, December 2 @ Mercer Union, 7 pm
Artist talk by Goll & Nielsen during which they will present the Niagara Falls Artist Host Program. Admission free.

Thursday, December 2 @ Mercer Union, 8 pm

Opening reception. Admission free. Mercer Union and Goll & Nielsen would like to thank Woolfitt’s Art Supplies for their generous donation of art materials for program participants of the Niagara Falls Artist Host Program. A donation box will be present for the duration of the exhibition and all proceeds will go toward the purchase of additional art materials and sponsorship of bus trips for program participants to Niagara Falls on December 18, 2004.

Saturday, December 4 @ Mercer Union, 2 pm

Talk by Amy Wah (board member of the Community and Legal Aid Services Programme, Toronto) and Manuel Mendelzon (Immigration Division Leader, Community and Legal Aid Services Programme, Toronto) on Canadian immigration, integration, and repatriation legislation. Followed by a presentation of the activities of the network No One Is Illegal -– Toronto by member Sima Zereni. Snacks and beverages will be served. Admission free.

Sunday, December 5 @ Mercer Union, 2 pm

Guest/host event: Slide show, polka music, and apple strudel performance by host Ulysses Castellanos. Admission free.

Saturday, December 11 @ Mercer Union, 2 pm

Talk by Ezat Mossallanejad (Councilor, Policy Analyst, and Researcher at the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture, Toronto) on “Toronto from Newcomers’ Perspective.” Snacks and beverages will be served. Admission free.

Sunday, December 12 @ Mercer Union, 2 pm

Guest/host event: Fundraiser for No One Is Illegal – Toronto’s Art Group Project. No One Is Illegal – Toronto has put together an art group for women and children held in immigration detention since December 2003, at the Heritage Inn (Toronto Immigrant Holding Centre) at 385 Rexdale Blvd. This event showcases the artwork created in Toronto’s detention centre, bringing the messages of those incarcerated within its walls to the outside world and undermining nationalist assumptions of Canada as a multicultural, immigrant-welcoming nation. As a space to open up discussion on the issues faced by non-status immigrants in Canada, this is a fundraising event to raise money and art supplies in order to continue the art group project. Snacks and beverages will be served. Admission free.

Non-status immigrants are among the most marginalized groups in Canada. Economic exploitation through underpaid wage labour and mistreatment at the hands of employers, landlords and others are typical experiences faced by people living without full legal immigration status. This is compounded by the fact that they face significant barriers to public services, such as legal support, education, emergency services, housing, health care, and social services. As well, non-status immigrants in Canada face significant risks including detention, deportation and surveillance.

No One is Illegal – Toronto is a group of immigrants, refugees and allies. We work to educate, mobilize and network to defend immigrants, migrant workers, refugees, and indigenous peoples, to oppose war and racism, and to deepen our understanding of colonialism, capitalism, patriarchy and migration in today’s world.

Our demands:

* regularization of all non-status people in Canada

* no deportations

* no detentions

* no racial or religious profiling

* recognition of the right to free movement

* recognition of Indigenous sovereignty

Friday, December 17 @ Mercer Union, 7 pm

Round table discussion on “Toronto Art Institutions and the Challenge of the Politics of Difference.” Speakers are Ulysses Castellanos (Toronto-based artist), Xandra Eden (Assistant Curator, The Power Plant, Toronto), and Janna Graham (Toronto-based educator, writer, and organizer). Snacks and beverages will be served. Admission free.

Saturday, December 18, 9 am – 10 pm

Bus excursion to the Niagara Falls, Ontario’s symbol of love and site of deportation. The excursion will include a visit to the Falls and the Canadian/US border, a guided tour by a Canada Customs Officer, a tour of the local sites by native Fallsian Roula Partheniou, a casino visit, lunch, and dinner. The bus will leave promptly at 9 am from Mercer Union and return there by 10 pm. Admission is $15 (or pay what you can) and covers bus ride only. Sponsorship of program participants’ trips are welcome. To enroll, please call 416.536.1519 or e-mail artisthostprogram@hotmail.com or info@mercerunion.org before December 13.