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A local arts & culture initiative of








XOXO Downsview
Call for Photographers

Date posted  May 1, 2023

Application deadline  May 24, 2023

Project timeframe  Half-day of
on-site photography, June/July 2023

Production  8-10 images

Photographer awarded  $2,500

We're seeking four pairs of fresh eyes to capture the insides of four old buildings on the Downsview lands in North York. Help us see these buildings anew!

These four buildings have long piqued curiosity, but have been off-limits to the public. Following a competition, four winning photographers will each gain exclusive access to one of these buildings. The resulting images will be featured on the outside of the buildings or nearby, as well as in a digital exhibition and at an in-person exhibition and public launch event.  


Photographers of all ages and levels of experience are invited to apply from across the GTA. Ultimately four will turn a creative eye to these buildings, bringing them to life for those of us on the outside.  


Interested photographers have until May 24 to submit a portfolio of work and a statement of intent for this project (see below). A review panel — drawn from the local arts and photographic community — will identify the winning photographers who will capture these buildings in summer 2023. Selected photographers will be paid $2500 for their creative work and participation at the launch event.


Inside on the Outside is a project of XOXO Downsview, a local artist initiative of Northcrest Developments and Canada Lands Company.

Our Buildings

Each winning photographer will be assigned one of four buildings. Artistic style and each photographer’s preference will be taken into account when pairing photographers and buildings.


Airplanes have been built in this assembly bay for decades. In fact, the aircrafts are still rolling out of this facility today. Expect a vast space, unencumbered by columns and partitions, with a tangle of metal roof trusses and pipes overhead. The 80,000 sq ft facility still has lots of equipment, tools, and infrastructure used for production. One wall is composed completely of retractable overhead doors with plate windows.


Small but mighty, this mechanical building is filled with the pipes, gauges, valves, levers, and dust. One wall includes a rolling shutter, permitting lots of natural light. The building was created in 1954 and contains water reservoirs used to supply water to the fire ring.


A.K.A. “Building 6” at 60 Carl Hall Road, the Quonset Hut is a half-cylindrical utility building made with a structure of laminated wood beams, covered with a skin of corrugated metal. One of many, it was built for the former Downsview Military Base — CFB Toronto — and is now a storage facility used by Downsview Park. The open interior space is currently filled with road salt and tools. Its beautifully rusty surfaces are illuminated with both natural and artificial light.


While it looks like a building, this is actually a massive machine. The Central Heat Plant No. 1, sometimes called “The Steam Plant,” is located at 15 Carl Hall Road. It is an artefact and a landmark. Inside, expect a massive jumble of colourful pipes, gauges, valves, dials, levers, and boilers. This complex machine is illuminated from light which pours in from the plate glass windows above.

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