Death and Dying Discussions

Thursday, January 24, 2019 - 10:00am to Friday, January 25, 2019 - 4:00pm

The mini-symposium seeks to be a catalyst, to open-up discussion and expressivity around the role of design and the still relative dominance of the medical perspective in approaches to dying and death. These discussions will connect across interrelated spheres - the academy, medicine, the broader public, and the art and design community.


The mini-symposium will start with a keynote by Ivor Williams (Helix Centre) on the evening of Thursday, January 24th followed by a day of discussions through panel, poster/video/demo session, invited and peer reviewed talks on Friday, January 25th. During the DesignTO there will be a number of events under the Death and Dying Series with an opportunity to visit four exhibits in Toronto including a juried exhibit ‘Until the Last Breath’ at the Artscape Youngplace gallery. 


Invited Speakers


Submission Guidelines

We invite submissions for peer review in the form of a 500 word abstract for either a short talk and/or poster/video/demo from a broad range of design researchers, practitioners, and teams working on end of life issues.  

Submissions will undergo a period of peer review and approx 10 individual talks will be selected for presentation and a maximum of 16 posters.


Deadline for submission is December 7th at 11.59 pm. Results will be available by December 21st.


Submission link :


Organizing committee

  • Dr Kate Sellen, OCADU
  • Karen Oikonen, The Moment
  • Laura Halleran, OCADU



The conference will be held at OCADU in Toronto. 



Laura Halleran




Venue & Address: 

Collaboration - Making & Thinking Symposium

Collaboration 2.0
Friday, November 9, 2018 - 7:00pm to Saturday, November 10, 2018 - 6:30pm

For more information

Collaboration as a way of conducting a creative practice is not a new phenomenon; however, it has become a prominent approach within the last two decades among artists, craftspeople and designers. This progression within contemporary craft is due in part to the growth of theory and practice generally; and movements within specific genres over the years. The ongoing development of post-disciplinary teaching and methods, the acknowledgement of underrepresented voices within craft discourses, and emergent technologies have had an effect on contemporary craft practice and thinking.

— Melanie Egan, Director of Craft & Design, Harbourfront Centre

Venue & Address: 
Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queen Quay West
$20/pp and Students/Seniors $15 for Keynote only and $50/pp and Students/Seniors $35 for Keynote & Symposium
Digital Screen: 

Register now for Ontario Climate symposium

Logo for symposium with trees and circles
Monday, September 17, 2018

OCAD University is hosting the 2018 Ontario Climate Change Consortium symposium on October 11 and 12. The symposium will explore how the development of positive, innovative, interdisciplinary visions can facilitate a transformative cultural shift toward low-carbon communities, sustainable adaptation and the adoption of green infrastructure and design in cities.

The two-day event is open to all, with students receiving a discounted rate. Come participate in a wide range of activities including a neighbourhood tour, short films, interactive presentations, a guided tour of the AGO’s Anthropocene exhibition, workshops and other activities. OCAD U Associate Professors Selmin Kara and Alia Weston are among faculty speaking or leading workshops.

Programming aims to foster a collective discussion on urban landscapes and highlight the interconnection of policy, public health, urban planning, climate change adaptation and mitigation and urban growth.

Register online for this exciting and informative event.

Established in 2011, the OCC works collaboratively with university researchers and partners from the public, private and NGO sectors on projects aimed at answering specific questions related to climate change and creating the intelligence necessary to address climate risk. Its formal mission: To arm decision makers with “regionally-specific climate data, intelligence and adaptation services that enable effective policy and investment responses to climate uncertainty in Ontario.”


Call for proposals: OCAD U hosts Ontario Climate Symposium

Graphic with words "Call for proposals"
Monday, April 9, 2018 - 2:30pm to Friday, May 11, 2018 - 5:00pm

OCADU is pleased to announce that it will be hosting this year’s Ontario Climate Symposium: Adaptive Urban Habitats through Ecological Design. By exploring how ecology meets tactical urbanism, the Symposium will showcase real-life examples of how technology, policy, green infrastructure and strategic design can come together to transform cities. We are currently accepting innovative papers and multidisciplinary proposals and visions that highlight a transformative cultural shift toward low-carbon communities, sustainable adaptation and the adoption of green infrastructure and design in urban cities.

Non-traditional styles of research/concept presentations will be prioritized. These include, but are not limited to, exhibitions or installations, short films and documentary screenings, themed sessions/panels, art and digital media, workshops/interactive sessions, and posters. For more information email All proposals will be reviewed by the Symposium organizing committee with decisions made by May 11th, 2018..

For more information on submissions, visit Climate Connections website






OCAD University hosts 2017 Manning Innovation Symposium

Thursday, November 23, 2017

OCAD University is proud to host the seventh Manning Innovation Symposium on Thursday, November 30, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Presented by Freedom Mobile, the Symposium will connect Canadian innovators and post-secondary students with a goal to inspire them to choose innovation as a life or career choice.

“We are delighted to host the Manning Innovation Symposium at OCAD University - Canada’s university of the imagination,” says Dr. Sara Diamond, president and vice-chancellor, OCAD University. “It is our belief that art and design are central and driving components of all forms of innovation and we are pleased to engage with the community and share our ground-breaking research and pathways to innovation success.”

“The pathway to innovation can be indirect and daunting,” says Foundation President Jennifer Diakiw. “We are grateful for Freedom Mobile’s support, which is a demonstration of their commitment to inspiring young Canadians to consider innovation as a life or career choice.”

The theme of this year’s Innovation Symposium is “The Imagination to Innovate, the Stamina to Succeed.” Organized by and for students, the Symposium is comprised of two components:

In the first session, Ernest C. Manning Awards Laureates and two innovators linked to OCAD University will share stories that focus on their pathways to innovation success. The presentations are brief and informal and will be recorded and produced as YouTube videos, which will be widely distributed.

The second component, Innovation Mentorship in 12 Minutes, is an opportunity for students to engage with the innovators in a way that is more meaningful than a Q & A session. Similar to speed dating, small groups of students will have approximately 12 minutes with each innovator for conversation.

“Encouraging innovation in Canada’s young people is key to helping ensure the future growth, development and prosperity of our community,” says Chethan Lakshman, Vice-President, External Affairs, Freedom Mobile. “Events like the Manning Innovation Symposium champion the development of new ideas and new thinking that will help inspire the next generation.” 

“The pathway to innovation can be indirect and daunting,” says Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation President Jennifer Diakiw. “When the innovators share their stories, students hear about the challenges, but also the tremendous rewards.”

Ernest C. Manning Awards Laureates participating in the Symposium will include the 2017 winners to be announced at the 36th Manning Innovation Awards at Toronto’s Scotiabank Centre on Wednesday, November 29. They will be available for media interviews at the Innovation Symposium at 10:30 a.m. at OCAD U.

The Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation discovers, encourages and rewards outstanding Canadian innovators – and tells their stories. The Innovation Symposia, held in partnership with Canadian post-secondary institutions, are key pillars in encouraging young Canadians through the innovators’ stories.



Thursday, April 28, 2011 - 6:00pm

Engaged in an ongoing process of development, the metropolis constitutes a defining aspect of contemporary society and artistic production. Since the rise of industrialization, conceptualizations of the city have been accompanied by notions of anxiety, progress, consumption, isolation, communication and dislocation. Within/out Space will engage with these varying conceptions and examine the metropolis through the lens of artistic engagement. Conditions and theories associated with urban space remain fertile ground for discussion among artists, critics, curators and theorists. This panel will engage with members of the Toronto artistic community whose work addresses issues raised by the metropolis.

The theme unifying all three presenters is that of the constantly evolving urban landscape and the psycho-geographical boundaries that shape our human psychology and identity.  He will seek to address the question of how is it that we negotiate the realistic conditions of urban life with media representations and popular culture.

"The face of the city changes more quickly, alas! Than the mortal heart."

- Charles Baudelaire



Evan Tyler

“Psycho-Geography and Urban Spaces”

Evan Tyler is a multi-media artist working in photography, video, drawing, text and performance. After providing an overview of his Having grown up in a small urban center, his ideals of the metropolis have become seminal to his current explorations. In this presentation, he will explore the theme of our discussion – Within/out Space – through three separate but related fascinating projects he has embarked on.


Flavio Trevisan

“The Game of Urban Renewal”

Flavio Trevisan is a visual artist and designer. He will discuss the Regent Park neighbourhood in Toronto and specifically how it was developed in the late 1940s to replace a notorious slum, only for it in turn to become a place associated primarily with crime and poverty. Flavio will present his work The Game of Urban Renewal as an in-depth study about how socio-political concerns continue to impact this particular community.


Keith Bresnahan

“The Metropolis and Its History”

Keith Bresnahan is Associate Professor at OCAD U, and a historian and theorist of modern architecture and graphic design. His writing and teaching explore the political, social and philosophical contexts of design. For our panel tonight, Keith will discuss the mapping (in) the city, particularly strategies for visualizing urban structures and flows, and the relation between such representations and lived urban experience. Keith will approach this talk from a historical and theoretical point of view, and the manner in which history has impacted today’s conceptions regarding the metropolis and urban spaces. He will emphasize problems concerning experience and representation, immediacy and mediation.




Venue & Address: 
100 McCaul Street, Room 190

2017 Manning Innovation Symposium

2017 Manning Innovation Symposium Poster
Thursday, November 30, 2017 - 11:00am to 2:00pm

Join us at the Symposium, to hear from and mingle with six innovators – four Manning Laureates and two OCAD U innovators. Their brief and dynamic presentations about their pathways to innovation will be followed by a complimentary lunch and a ‘speed innovating’ experience where you can connect one-on-one with these inspiring innovators and more.

For 36 years, the Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation has been creating a culture of innovation in Canada by discovering, encouraging and rewarding Canadian innovators and telling their stories. Manning Laureates’ innovations are commercially viable and touch all areas of human endeavour.


On-site registration will begin at 11:00am.

The Symposium will begin at 11:30am.


To register please click here.

Follow us on Facebook here.

Venue & Address: 
The Great Hall 100 McCaul Street, Room 270 Toronto, Ontario M5T 1W1
416-977-6000 x4782

Opportunity to Display Your Art

Open call for artwork to be displayed in the Great Hall during the 2017 Manning Innovation Symposium, Submission Deadline: November 10 at 11:59pm

Stories from the Vault: 7th Annual Indigenous Visual Culture Symposium

Sunday, September 17, 2017 - 2:00pm

Stories from the Vault: 7th Annual Indigenous Visual Culture Symposium
Sunday, September 17
2 to 5:30 p.m.

Light refreshments available

Panelists: Barry Ace, David General, Rick Hill, Tom Hill, Barry Pottle, Ryan Rice
Moderated by: Linda Grussani
Welcome by: Elder Garry Sault, Mississaugas of New Credit

In conjunction with the exhibition, raise a flag: work from the Indigenous Art Collection (2000-2015), Indigenous Visual Culture at OCAD University and Onsite Gallery co-present the symposium, Stories From The Vault. The symposium will include a panel of former managers and curators of the Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada’s National Indigenous Art Collection who will speak of their experience in developing the collection, identify and speak of their favorite works and share unique stories to shed light on the national collection’s 50 year history.

Image: views of the Indigenous Art Centre's vault.

raise a flag is produced with the support of the Collection of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, courtesy of the Indigenous Art Centre/Collection des Affaires autochtones et du Nord Canada, courtoisie du Centre d'art autochtone; Our Children's Medicine program and HigherMe; the Canada Council for the Arts; the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council; the Indigenous Visual Culture Program at OCAD University; and, the Delaney Family Foundation.

Venue & Address: 
Onsite Gallery, 199 Richmond St. W. (Ground Floor)
416-977-6000 x456
Views of the Indigenous Art Centre's vault

TODO Talks Symposium: Design and the pursuit of well-being

TO DO Talks Symposium: Design and the pursuit of well-being
Saturday, January 21, 2017 - 2:00pm to 6:00pm

TO DO’s second annual symposium brings 12 multi-disciplinary experts into one room to discuss design and the pursuit of well-being. The four-hour event features keynote speaker Jamer Hunt, three thematic sessions, and an opportunity for fulsome discussion among those in attendance.



Imagine a world where homes, neighbourhoods, and things make you feel good about yourself, where your lifestyle and workplace help you reach your full potential, where everything around you is designed to keep you healthy and safe, and enable you to be compassionate and reach a state of flow.

Multidisciplinary experts discuss how well-being is understood and created through design, innovation, and change at the second annual TO DO Talks Symposium on design and the pursuit of well-being.

Registration begins at 1:30pm on Saturday, January 21, 2017.

Ticket holders need to arrive by 2pm to guarantee their seat.



Keynote Speaker: Jamer Hunt

Session 1: Well-being in the workplace

The future of work and the powerful influence of design
Maggie Dempster, Workplace Consultant
John Roberts, Design Strategy Lead
Herman Miller

Play to Perform: Why Play is the Future of Work
Farzad Sedghipour, Futurist
Farzad Innovation

Designing a Culture: Experiments in rapid behavioural prototyping
Erika Bailey, Innovation Designer
The Moment



Session 2: Well-being and health

Designing beyond the health service
Robbie Bates, Design Director

Role of Design in Synthesizing Different Kinds of Truth about Health and Wellbeing
Dr. Kate Sellan, Director, Graduate Program in Design for Health
OCAD University

Designing for Health in a Connected World
Dr. Kamran Khan, CEO and Founder|
James Yoon, Director of Design



Session 3: Well-being and society

In Light of Dark Matter
Daniel Rossi, Visual Maker

The Art of Building Community: How JAYU builds safe spaces to share human rights stories through the arts.
Gilad Cohen, Founder & Executive Director

Designing for Meaning
Len Senator, Founder/Owner, The Depanneur & Co-founder, Newcomer Kitchen
The Depanneur


* For full session descriptions please visit the Toronto Design Offsite Festival website*


Funding generously provided by the Ontario Arts Council. Special thanks to our institutional partner OCAD University, and sponsor Gladstone Hotel.

TO DO Talks Symposium is a signature event organized by the Toronto Design Offsite Festival.

Venue & Address: 
OCAD University 100 McCaul Street Main Auditorium (Room 190) Toronto, ON M5T 1W1