Monthly Open Review at the Inclusive Design Research Centre

Wednesday, February 5, 2014 - 7:30pm to 8:30pm

Please join us!

Interested in having a say about inclusive design? Want your ideas about digital accessibility heard? Your feedback is important to us!

We will be holding a monthly, open design review meeting where we will present work from current and ongoing projects at the Inclusive Design Research Centre. We want to hear from you -- our potential users, fellow designers and anyone interested in seeing what we're up to here at the IDRC. Spread the word!

Join us from 2:30-3:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month at the Inclusive Design Research Centre, OCAD University, 205 Richmond St., 2nd floor.

If you are interested please respond with your preferred contact information. You will receive a reminder each month and you can choose to participate on a month-by-month basis.

Questions or concerns? Please send an email to

The IDRC is a research and development centre at OCAD University where an international community of open source developers, designers, researchers, advocates, and volunteers work together to ensure that emerging information technology and practices are designed inclusively. Learn more about the IDRC.

Venue & Address: 
Inclusive Design Research Centre, 2nd Floor 205 Richmond Street West Toronto, Ontario

Toronto Tea Festival 2014

Event Poster
Saturday, February 1, 2014 - 5:00am to Sunday, February 2, 2014 - 5:00am

Curated by OCAD U alumna, Katherine Bellman, Drawing & Painting, 2010

The Toronto Tea Festival returns for its 2nd year to the Bram & Bluma Appel Salon of The Toronto Central Reference Library on February 1 and 2, 2014.

Following the huge success of last year’s festival which drew over 1200 attendees, Canadian Tea Media Inc. will once again present an event that features tea tastings, speakers, tea ceremonies and exhibitors offering related products as well as an auction featuring rare tea items.

“We are very excited to organize such a great event again,” says Tao Wu, owner of Tao Tea Leaf. “And due to last year’s turn out, we are proud to extend it to two days. This show reaches out directly to the growing public fascination in the ancient art of preparing and serving the second most consumed beverage in the world.”

“The return of the Toronto Tea festival for a second year is an exciting step in the evolution of Canada into a knowledgeable tea consuming society,” says Bill Kamula, Tea Guild of Canada Chair. “Tea is one of the fastest growing segments of the beverage market, and this festival presents an opportunity for interested consumers to explore many aspects of tea culture, and be introduced to new tea products, under one roof.

Over 30 exhibitors participated last year, and this year will feature many additional exhibitors to suit all of your tea related needs.

For a complete listing of Festival events and to purchase tickets in advance please visit Tickets also available at Tao Tea Leaf and Majesteas.

Ticket Prices:
Single Day Pass: $10 Early Bird / $15 Regular
Two Day Pass: $20 Early Bird / $25 Regular **Please note tickets will not be sold at the door once the event sells out.

Venue & Address: 
Toronto Reference Library, Appel Salon, 2nd floor 789 Yonge Street Toronto, Ontario 647-878-6934  

IT'S A START Semi-Finalists Announcement

Event Poster
Monday, January 27, 2014 - 5:00am

A pitch competition for digital entrepreneurs

Digifest is proud to announce a unique opportunity for individuals to participate in the IT’S A START pitch competition.

What is IT’S A START?
Supported by the Digital Media Research and Innovation Institute and the undergraduate and graduate Digital Futures Program of OCAD University.

IT’S A START is a pitch competition for digital entrepreneurs.

This competition is open to creative professionals, budding entrepreneurs, start-ups, students and recent graduates looking to pitch their ideas in a competitive format. Finalists will have an opportunity on stage during the festival to show the jury why their project deserves to win one of the prizes, which includes financing and incubation space in the George Brown College Digital Media & Gaming Incubator and OCAD University’s Imagination Catalyst Incubator. We are looking for the most innovative ideas from individuals, start-ups or digital companies who have special projects that they want to take to the next level. There is no fee to apply for this competition.

How does the contest work?
The contest will be developed in the following phases.

Phase 1 – The competition officially launches in October 2013. Contestants have two months to submit their application.

Phase 2 – Applications will be accepted until Friday January 17, 2014 at 5 p.m. All entries will be reviewed by the IT’S A START Committee and the first round of finalists will be announced on Monday January 27, 2014.

Phase 3 - First round finalists will have an opportunity to attend a Creative CampSaturday February 8 & Sunday February 9, 2014) where
entrepreneurs in residence will provide mentorship support and help the finalists evolve their projects.

Phase 4 – In order to be considered for the pitch contest finale, finalists must re-submit their updated project proposals by Friday March 14, 2014 at 5 p.m. All entries will be reviewed by the IT’S A START Committee and the second round of finalists will be announced on Monday March 24, 2014.

Phase 5 – All of the second round finalists will have an opportunity to present to their mentors from the Creative Camp on Saturday April 5 or Sunday April 6, 2014 and receive coaching and feedback for the pitch contest finale.

Phase 6 – The Pitch Contest Finale Part 1 will take place during Digifest on Friday May 9, 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at the Corus Quay building located at Toronto’s Waterfront. Twenty semi-finalists will have 60 seconds on stage before a live audience to convince the jury why their project deserves to win. The jury will then select 10 finalists to present in the Pitch Contest Finale Part 2 the next day.

Phase 7 – The Pitch Contest Finale Part 2 will take place during Digifest on Saturday May 10, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. Ten contestants will have 3 minutes on stage to present to the jury and a public audience (please note that this is not a Digifest ticketed event).

Final Presentation Pitch Contest Rules for Part 1, Friday May 9th
• Only one individual from the team can deliver the 60 second pitch at Digifest on
Friday May 9, 2014.
• Each contestant will have two minutes to respond to judges’ Q & A, directly
following their pitch.
• Audio-visual equipment, PowerPoint presentation slides, prototypes etc. are NOT
permitted during the pitch competition. However, finalists have an opportunity to
showcase presentations/prototypes for their projects in the festival exhibit area.

Final Presentation Pitch Contest Rules for Part 2, Saturday May 10th
• Only one individual from the team can deliver the final 3-minute pitch at Digifest
on Saturday May 10, 2014.
• Each contestant will have two minutes to respond to judges’ Q & A, directly
following their pitch.
• PowerPoint presentations are mandatory for this part of the presentation
• May 10, 2014 at Corus Quay building Main Stage area where the winners will be
• NB: For technical purposes, all finalists are required to attend a dry run
of their pitch presentation before Digifest on Tuesday May 6, 2014 at The
Corus Quay building located at Toronto’s Waterfront.

What are the prizes?
We will be announcing the It’s A Start 2014 prizes soon.

It’s a Start prizes for 2012 included more than $8,000 in cash prizes, mentorship and
incubation space at George Brown College Digital Media & Gaming Incubator and OCAD
University’s Imagination Catalyst Incubator.

What Projects are eligible?
Project Criteria

The focus for Digifest 2014 is “future cities” and digital urbanism. For the IT’S A START competition, we are looking for creative, cutting-edge projects driven by conscientious and dedicated individuals that will help us solve some of today’s pressing urban challenges. Do you have an original idea that can improve the way we live, work and play? Have you developed an application or technology that will allow us to manage
complexities and build more resilient cities? Does your project connect people and
networks, ultimately enabling us to live better lives? If your project or idea fits the above-mentioned criteria then please keep reading.

Project Eligibility
• Project entries or ideas must be the original work of the applicant(s).
• Applicant(s) who have submitted to IT’S A START competition in the past and
have not qualified as a finalist can re-submit a proposal, however, you must be able to demonstrate how the project or idea has changed.

What projects are NOT eligible?
• Submissions that have won in previous IT’S A START competitions.
Who can enter?
• Start-up companies
• Entrepreneurs
• Students or recent graduates
• NB: George Brown College and OCAD University students/graduates/faculty are eligible to participate in the competition,
however, you must disclose this information in your application.

Who is on the IT’S A START committee?
The committee is made up of experts from industry, academia and finance.

What are the selection criteria?
The committee will use the following criteria to determine the finalists for the
• Originality (Has this idea been presented this way before? How does your idea
compare to existing projects/ideas that address similar issues)
• Marketability (Is there a demand for your idea? Why would someone buy it?)
• Market Readiness (How much more development is needed?)
• User friendly (How easy is it to use?)
• Creativity & Design (How is the project executed? Is the overall design clear and
• Feasibility (How realistic is your plan to execute this project? Does your budget
take into consideration the logistics, production, technical requirements and
other expenditures?)
• Probability of Success (With the right investment and support, could this idea
become a successful business?)

The first IT’S A START competition was held in Monza, Italy organized by Regione Lombardia, Provincia Monza Brianza and Camera di Commercio di Monza in June 2012. The next competition “IT’S A START Canada” premiered at Digifest Saturday, October 20, 2012.

Contact Us
For more information and general inquiries about the competition, contact Miriam
Brookman at or at (416) 415-5000 ext. 3556.

For sponsorship inquiries about the competition, contact Lucia Piccinni at or at (416) 415-5000 ext. 3152.


OCAD U Photo Thesis: Silent Print Auction

Event Poster
Friday, January 24, 2014 - 12:00am to 3:00am

Come out and bid on works by fourth year OCAD U photography students!

The students of OCAD U's 2014 photo thesis year are hosting a silent print auction on the eve of Thursday, January 23. Join us in the photography department for the opportunity to view and bid on work by emerging artists from this year's photo thesis in addition to both mid-career and established artists.

Featured artists include:
Ibrahim Abusitta
Anthony Gerace
Jonathan Groenweg
Osheen Harruthoonyan
T. Reilly Hodgson
Brendan George Kokomo
Jennifer Long
Stephanie Mill
Daniel Scinocca
Meera Margaret Singh
Michael Trozzolo
and more...

Come on out to support an array of emerging artists!

Snacks and beverages will be provided.

Venue & Address: 
Room 408, 4th Floor 100 McCaul St. Toronto, Ontario

Come Up To My Room: Souvenir Shop | Room 211

Image of the come up to my room display
Thursday, January 23, 2014 - 5:00am to Sunday, January 26, 2014 - 5:00am

Eyes on Design w/ Stephen Eyes: Thursday, January 23, 8pm in the Ballroom, $10
Collage Party in the Melody Bar: Saturday, January 25, 10am-4pm
Opening Reception: Saturday, January 25, 7-11pm
Love Design Party: Saturday, January 25, 10

Motherbrand presents OCAD University art and design students as part of the Toronto Design Offsite Festival

In this room, we will be selling original and small-batch productions of keepsakes and souvenirs. These affordable and curious objects have been created and exhibited by OCAD students and edited by Motherbrand.

Thursday 6-8pm
Friday 11am-8pm
Saturday 11am-10pm
Sunday 11am-5pm

$10 general admission
$25 for school groups, book tours with
$5 for students on Friday, January 24

Venue & Address: 
Gladstone Hotel 1214 Queen Street West Toronto, Ontario  
Amission fees apply

Come Up to My Room

Maniquin in a blue dress and black sweater
Thursday, January 23, 2014 - 5:00am to Sunday, January 26, 2014 - 5:00am

Opening Reception: Saturday, January 25, 7-11pm

The Gladstone Hotel’s Annual Alternative Design Event with curation and work by current IAMD Master's students

An exhibition about trust, risk and collaboration, Come Up To My Room (CUTMR) enters its second decade as Toronto’s biggest alternative design event. A surprise until the day before it opens, the show never fails to delight and inspire with 25 installations that transform the Gladstone Hotel both inside and out. This show bends disciplinary boundaries and explores new ground each year. Amongts his years participants is Anna Jofre a current IAMD MFA student. Curator Robert Cram is also currently enrolled in the Interdisciplinary Master's program.

Thursday 6-8pm
Friday 11am-8pm
Saturday 11am-10pm
Sunday 11am-5pm

Taking inspiration from the Gladstone itself, Nathan Whitford and Sarah Keenlyside illuminate the façade to reveal the architectural bones beneath, while Rollout confronts the constraints of a historic building where their wallpaper cannot go on the walls. Throughout the building, Sisley Leung’s mouse-sized hotel amenities and Ana Jofre’s life-sized marionettes question who else makes use of the hotel.

A secretive collaboration between resident artist Bruno Billio and studio resident, the Department of Unusual Certainties, is bound to surprise you with new sounds, while the Torontonians, the Teenagers in Residence, and Mammalian Diving Reflex present a manic, hyper teen aesthetic in ‘GET OUT OF MY ROOM.’

Experiences of fantasy and reality, inside and out, private and public are mediated by the Escapespace installation that emerges onto Queen Street, Currentform’s responsive hotel entrance, Natasha Basacchi + Aliya Tejani’s interactive bathroom, and A Zero’s Fall of the Walled Garden where all is revealed. Connect to other times and places with Victoria Taylor and Linda Dervishaj’s Emergent Structures, SPAM collective’s Touched, and Andrew Foerster’s city of ramshackle sheds and raw mean villains.

Installations by Jordan Evans, Ryla Jakelski + Evan Jerry with Lois Weinthal (RSID), KRDW, Kathleen Wicks, Shannon Scanlan, Claire Scherzinger, Christine Kim and Vanathy Ganesharajah explore materiality and sense of place, offering alternative perspectives of tangible realities.

Making is celebrated in furniture and lighting throughout the hotel by Wayne Muma, Jennifer Rong, Sheridan College, Bettie Cott and Megan Blake, Hilary Hayes and Tim Richards. The making continues in the Melody Bar with Collage Parties hosted by the Collage Collective.

Interested in the processes, skills and techniques behind CUTMR installations, participants were invited to submit short videos that explain their works in progress. Watch them here.

This year’s exhibition is curated by Jaclyn Blumas, Robert Cram, Elise Hodson and Britt Welter-Nolan.

Venue & Address: 
Gladstone Hotel 1214 Queen Street West Toronto, Ontario
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General Admission $10

Supporting Documents: Résumé/CV, Cover Letter & Statements

Event poster
Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - 8:00pm to 9:30pm

Hands-on workshop to build your professional documents!

A repeat offering of the Jan. 20 workshop, all students are invited to attend this session where we will outline best practices and explore current trends related to résumés, CVs, cover letters and artist/design statements. A significant portion of this session will be dedicated to a guided workshop which will help you build or refine your documents.

Delivered by the Career Development office, this is part of a comprehensive series of FREE workshops intended to support student success.

Venue & Address: 
Room 1516, 5th Floor 113 McCaul St. Toronto, Ontario
<p>416-977-6000 x3843</p>

Wealthy Wednesdays: Money Skills for Success

Wealthy Wednesdays, with a a 20, 10 and 5 dollar bill in the background.
Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm


Free hands-on financial planning for students and grads. Pracitce a different financial skill every Wednesday through engaging activities, videos and scenarios.

January 22, 2014: Track Your Money and Make a Budget
Do you know how much you really spend on coffee or groceries? In this workshop, you’ll learn to track and categorize your spending so you know where it goes. Then you’ll create a plan for the future to help you achieve your goals!

Venue & Address: 
Rm187 (Lambert Lounge) 100 McCaul St. Toronto, Ontario

Gary Taxali: Shanti Town

Thursday, January 30, 2014 - 5:00am to Sunday, February 9, 2014 - 5:00am

A Pop Up Exhibition by OCAD U Alumus Gary Taxali

Opening Reception:
Thursday, January 30, 2014
from 6 - 9 p.m.

Artist Talk:
Saturday, February 1, 2014
from 1 - 2 p.m.

Catalogue Orders:
Lynda Macpherson - 416.847.6190

Stephen Ranger - 416.847.6194

Gallery Hours:
Weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Weekends from Noon to 5 p.m.

Venue & Address:, 2nd Floor 275 King Street East Toronto, Ontario
(416) 504-9100

Terreform ONE: Terrarium workshop with grOCAD

Event Poster
Wednesday, January 29, 2014 - 11:30pm

Biological Urbanism: An Opera of Disciplines from Architecture, Landscape, Urban Design, Biology, Engineering and Art

Terreform ONE (Open Network Ecology) is a New York-based design group that promotes environmentally conscious urban planning. Its projects are an exciting mixture of architecture, landscape, urban design, biology, engineering and art and it is dedicated to finding innovative solutions for sustainability in energy, transportation, city infrastructure and waste management. The works featured in this exhibition at Onsite [at] OCAD U highlight Terreform ONE’s interest in incorporating living organisms in design, and advancing the notion of sustainability beyond a popularized mainstream rhetoric.

Wednesday, January 29, 6:30 P.M.
Terrarium workshop with grOCAD
Want to make your own little green world? Join us and create your personal, creative terrarium, a little piece of oasis in jars for your indoor spaces. Learn the tips and tricks on growing moss, lichen and air plants. Best way to grow for beginners or Black Thumbs as they are super low maintenance varieties! Hosted by Che Chi Liu, Tom Doughty and Mary Ma of grOCAD.

Gallery Hours
Tuesday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday, noon to 6 p.m.
Free and Open to the General Public

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Image: BIO CITY MAP OF 11 BILLION: World Population in 2110 (Detail), Mitchell Joachim, Nurhan Gokturk, Melanie Fessel, Maria Aiolova, Oliver Medvedik

Venue & Address: 
Onsite [at] OCAD U 230 Richmond Street West Toronto, Ontario
Website: &nbsp;
<p>416-977-6000 ext.265</p>