Students populate this year’s one-day event

By: Elisabeth Kehler

Nuit Blanche Winnipeg was back for a one-day event on Sept. 24, 2022, a relief for students, artists, and organizers.

Nuit Blanche is an annual art event originating in France. The Exchange District, The Forks, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and St. Boniface feature art displays and installations.

“I was glad to see that it was actually very populated,” said Emma den Haan, 22, a Digital Media Design student at Red River College Polytechnic.

“We went last year when they were trying to spread it out for COVID over the week… it was so sad because there was nobody there.”

Den Haan said this year’s event felt like Nuit Blanche before COVID-19.

Chey Chua, 20, another Digital Media Design student at RRC Polytech said there was a lot of art to see at Nuit Blanche.

“[There] was a lot of things to look at,” said Chua. “Not as much as other years, I would say. But there’s still lots to see, which is pretty nice.”

Winnipeggers admire a Nuit Blanche Winnipeg logo on Market Avenue in the Exchange District on Sept. 24, 2022. (Elisabeth Kehler)

There was a tremendous turnout, said Kurt Tittlemier, the project manager with Culture Days Manitoba.

 “There’s been underemployment in the arts the last two years, so we recognize that,” Tittlemier said.

“Fire Cycle,” by Jonathan S Green, was an art installation in Old Market Square. The piece consisted of sixteen tree and fire-shaped inflatables. Green, 38, said the piece was about wildfire’s place in the ecosystem.

“My goal was… by having them made of these soft materials, by taking away the danger of a wildfire, some people would then be able to see it does have a place in the ecosystem,” Green said.

“Moths to a Flame,” by local artist Warren Carther, was an art piece featured at Little Brown Jug. It had sixteen fire-shaped panes of repurposed glass in a line with two projections of images of fire from both ends.

Carther said he was happy with how the piece was received.

“It didn’t seem to matter how old people were — they were engaged by the piece,” he said. “I liked the fact that they needed to figure it out… I think it really distorted people’s perceptions… It really transforms what we perceive as fire.”

This piece was one of many features at Little Brown Jug’s block party that evening.

“It was quite the spectacle, really, to be honest,” said Little Brown Jug manager Cal Cheney. “This is the first time in a couple of years we were able to do a big event like that.”