January 24 2024  |  Airlines & Airports

Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport unveils "Project T-Dot" photography exhibit

By Hibah Noor

Toronto-based photographer Ajani Charles brings his stunning visual chronicle of Toronto's diverse hip-hop scene to the city's downtown airport for a limited time

As part of its commitment to reflecting the vibrancy and diversity of the city of Toronto through unique art activations, Nieuport Aviation, in partnership with celebrated Toronto-based photographer Ajani Charles, has unveiled its "Project T-Dot" exhibit in the passenger terminal at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. It is the largest ever installation to show at the airport.

Project T-Dot depicts candid images of Toronto's most renowned hip-hop figures, as well as others who are lesser-known, but nonetheless influential in its hip-hop scene. The project allows visitors the opportunity to engage with the cultural richness of the city.

Project T-Dot, which initially premiered at Toronto City Hall and Nathan Phillips Square in 2022, presents a definitive visual story that sheds new light on the world of hip-hop and features recognizable artists including Drake, The Weeknd, Director X, Kardinal Offishall, Jessie Reyez, Jully Black, Master T, Maestro Fresh Wes, and organizations like The Remix Project, Honey Jam, Manifesto Community Projects, October's Very Own, and MuchMusic, among others.

Reflecting the diversity of the subculture, the exhibit features members of the 2SLGBTQ+, Black, and Indigenous communities, women, youth from equity-deserving neighbourhoods, recent immigrants, and other marginalized groups. Travelers at Billy Bishop Airport will be greeted with 60 large-scale photographic panels in the terminal's atrium, alongside an interactive touchscreen that can be used to learn more about the city's hip hop culture, community and history by exploring supplementary information.

"As the owner and operator of the passenger terminal at Billy Bishop Airport, Nieuport Aviation is committed to not only playing a vital role in connecting travellers to the places they want to be, but also to connecting our neighbours and travellers Toronto's vibrant culture," says Neil Pakey, President and CEO, Nieuport Aviation. "We're pleased to be partnering with a talent like Ajani Charles to present this one-of-a-kind exhibit to our valued passengers, employees and community members."

"We are honoured to be joining our partners Nieuport Aviation in unveiling Project T-Dot at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. This large-scale installation reflects Toronto's vibrant hip-hop culture and the contributions of some of this city's most renowned figures on the scene," says RJ Steenstra, President and CEO, PortsToronto. "Thank you to Nieuport Aviation and the City of Toronto for bringing this interactive, engaging artwork to the terminal where it will be accessible to both passengers and the public, helping to bring people together, generate conversation and make the important connections that we strive to make at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport even deeper."

"I have dedicated 18 years of my life and a significant part of my consciousness to documenting the inspiring, talented, resourceful, and diverse individuals and organizations that define Toronto's unique Hip-Hop culture, community, and history. I am grateful for the opportunity to introduce the general public and millions of travellers to one of Toronto's most influential subcultures through my latest exhibit at Billy Bishop Airport. I'd like to thank Nieuport Aviation, PortsToronto, Sony Music Entertainment Canada, and other dedicated partners like the City of Toronto, Canon Canada, and the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival," adds Charles.

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