Get ready to swing: This year marks the first time OCAD University is participating in the street fair at Toronto’s PRIDE festival. From June 26 to 28, stop by OCAD U’s Swing Lounge, an innovative booth where visitors can interact with the installation as well as with volunteers – students, faculty, staff and alumni – from across the university.
Unlike conventional booths at the PRIDE street fair, The Swing Lounge invites participants into a 10’ x 10’ space where they can swing from suspended seats while listening to audio recordings representing the diverse experiences and thoughts of students, faculty and staff – including President Dr. Sara Diamond. Shamina Chherawala of OCAD U’s Office of Diversity, Equity & Sustainability says that The Swing Lounge “both disrupts a monolithic understanding of queerness and celebrates our place in the larger LGBTQQI2SA* community.”
The Swing Lounge (pictured here under construction) was conceived, designed and built by Rouzbeh Akhbari, Nelly Goodarzi and Sayyad Glassford. Based on consultations with OCAD U community members, it also showcases the university’s art and design talent, and was created entirely within the university’s own shops and studios. OCAD U’s installation is dedicated to Wendy Coburn, an OCAD U professor, activist and artist who recently passed away.
Be sure to make The Swing Lounge a stop on your PRIDE 2015 celebrations. And tweet your impressions to #OCADU.
*Lesbian, Gay, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, 2-spirit, Asexual/Allies