Leading while Remembering

Celebrating Culture and Diversity

The Leading while Remembering series is a City of Markham initiative bringing cultural and diversity programming to the community. As we move forward on the City’s journey of diversity and inclusion, it’s crucial to acknowledge the past, honour the present and move forward to a brighter future.

2023/ 2024 Leading while Remembering series

From May 2023 to February 2024, Markham’s three culture properties mark the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Exclusion Act with special exhibits and presentations in partnership with local community groups.

Ranging from the historical to the modern, Varley Art Gallery, Markham Museum and Flato Markham Theatre will offer visitors insight into the experiences, contributions and perseverance of the Chinese-Canadian community.


Every time you visit a Leading while Remembering activity, you earn an entry into our prize draw!
Just scan the QR code found at each activation and complete the ballot.  The more exhibits, events and presentations you attend, the greater the chance to win prizes.  Prizes include theatre tickets, admission passes, art kits, restaurant gift certificates and more!

The following are the three main components of this year's Leading while Remembering series:

Markham Museum

September 28, 2023 to Lunar New Year, 2024

Exhibit: Standing in the Doorway: Lived Histories & Experiences of the Chinese Community

A joint project with community partners, York Region District School Board Museum & Archives and students from the University of Toronto's Museum Studies program.  This exhibition explores the history of Chinese immigration to York Region.

Flato Markham Theatre

Tuesday, October 3, 2023
One night only
Movie: The Last Stitch with talk back by Director, A.H. Sung

Born to a family of tailors, Tommy Sung grew up in the trade. When his father died, he and his wife Connie took over
the family business.

In 1996, facing the imminent handover of Hong Kong to China, the couple decided to emigrate to Canada. There,
they successfully rebuilt their business making traditional Chinese cheongsam. Twenty years on, they’re ready to
retire. But what of the skills that have been handed down in their family for three generations?
This story takes us from Shanghai to Hong Kong and Toronto, reflecting the history of the Chinese diaspora as well
as the rise and fall of traditional craftsmanship.

Varley Art Gallery ***Exhibition closed

May 13 to September 5, 2023

Exhibit: Longing Belonging, 100 Years 100 Stories

Longing Belonging, 100 Years 100 Stories, a community engagement project and exhibition organized by the collective Long Time No See (LTNS), tackles Canada's troubled colonialist history by marking the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Exclusion Act. LTNS members engaged with local Markham communities, interviewing and photographing people in spaces that elicited sentiments of belonging, and gathering images and stories to be presented in the gallery.

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