Pride 2016

Planning for Pride 2016 is underway – details coming soon.

If you would like to volunteer with OCAD University’s Pride 2016 programming, please contact Shamina Chherawala, Programs, Outreach & Human Rights Advisor, at

Pride 2015

In collaboration with Admissions and Recruitment and On-Site Gallery, ODESI coordinated the design, build and hosting of a public art installation situated in the Pride 2015 Street Fair in the Church-Wellesley Village from June 26-28, 2015. Conceived and built by OCAD U students Rouzbeh Akhbari and Sayyad Glassford, and alumni Nelly Goodarzi, The Swing Lounge marked OCAD U’s presence at Toronto Pride this year.

Image Description: OCAD U Community members convening around the Pride installation in Butterfield Park.

Unlike conventional booths in the Pride Street Fair, The Swing Lounge invited participants into a 10’x10’ installation space to engage with stories representing the diverse voices of LGBTQQI2SA communities at OCAD U and their realities as artists and designers. Evoking the idea of play as a radical political activity, The Swing Lounge was comprised of whimsical suspended seating designed and built by students in the woodshop. Directional speakers were installed with looping audio clips featuring narratives from staff, faculty, students, alumni and members of OCAD U’s senior leadership. As described in the artist statement, 

“The goal of this project was to disrupt a monolithic understanding of queerness. With this installation, we share our many identities and experiences as we celebrate our place in the larger LGBTQQI2SA community.” 

Image Description: Close up of Installation logo outside OCAD U.

The installation was dedicated to the memory of the late Wendy Coburn, lesbian, feminist, artist and OCAD U professor. 

The installation attracted over 1,500 visitors and OCAD U staff and students volunteered throughout the weekend to engage the broader community, many of whom shared their own stories and connections to OCAD U.