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Taco Stand Project: An Experiment in Sharing

November 26 – February 18, 2017
Taco Stand Project
Taco Stand Project

Idea Exchange
Queen's Square Lobby

See Map: Google Maps

With a vision to create an environment of curiosity and discovery, Idea Exchange is embracing a centuries-old method of exchange and welcoming this fall, the Taco Stand Project.

The Taco Stand Project is an experiment, a venue, an activator for community sharing. It aims to bring us together to find new ways of navigating the challenges of today. The Taco Stand Project wants to become a different kind of norm, where trading skills and sharing ideas are not tied up in commerce and power, but rather a community minded collaboration, with cost-free resources and social empowerment.

In Mexico, a taco stand is a temporary venue and a gathering hub, serving low-cost food to any given neighbourhood and offering social interaction. The majority of taco stands in Mexico remain unregulated, meaning they pop up as necessary and remain outside the framework of regulated restaurant culture. They arrive from necessity of making a buck in impoverished places. They show up temporarily at festivals and community hot spots. They care for the locals and offer a quick bite for cheap.

Borrowing from this culture of unregulated economy, the Taco Stand Project explores what opportunities reside in our community for empowering people to share their skills, trade tasks or things, or teach an original solution to a common problem.

The Taco Stand Project is our first attempt and needs you because a community is built by all of us.

Taco Stand Project is developed in conjunction with the exhibition With Mexico, From Love.

Intrigued? Excited? Get involved!

There are two ways to participate in Taco Stand Project:

  1. Give a workshop, a talk, a demonstration or tell a story. Share your culture, knit a sweater, fix some things or salvage the discarded. It’s your stand. Your venue. Book it.
  2. Trade things at no cost. Two hours of dog walking in exchange for a car wash. Tomatoes in exchange for homemade pies. An old collection of vinyl in exchange for a guitar. The Trading Post awaits your announcement.

As long as it’s safe, environmentally friendly, beneficial to someone and clever in not perpetuating capitalist hunger, we’ll make it work.

APPLY! Learn more and apply to be part of the Taco Stand Project by clicking here.

Want to learn more?

We are sharing stories from our local community that embody the essence of the Taco Stand Project. Enjoy the stories below and check back often for new additions.

  • Community Garden in Cambridge run by Ken Bedirian
    Community Garden in Cambridge run by Ken Bedirian
  • Guitars for Kids partners
    Guitars for Kids partners
  • Hack Ur Jeans
    Hack Ur Jeans
  • Book binding at the Taco Stand
    Book binding at the Taco Stand

Related Links


City of Cambridge Canada Council for the Arts Ontario Arts Council


Submitted by Dave Wastle (not verified) on

Your taco stand exhibition is marvelous, but I am disappointed that it includes Tarot card reading. That public moneys are used to encourage the use of what is, at the core, an item of the occult is disturbing. I realize that the reaction may be that it is in the Mexican culture but this is not Mexico and there are lots of positive items that can be chosen. Please respond to this issue before more reaction to the Cambridge Times article yesterday arrises.
Thank you for your response in advance

Submitted by Jaime Griffis (not verified) on

Thank you so much for providing your feedback on the offerings of the Taco Stand Project and the article in the Cambridge Times. I am sorry we did not meet your expectations. The Taco Stand Project offers programming from Idea Exchange staff but also gives the community the opportunity to sign up for a timeslot in which to come and share information, ideas or experience for free; to create a community gathering hub. The article highlighted both types of programming in the space. I appreciate you taking the time to provide us with your feedback and your opinion. We are always looking to improve our service to the public.

Submitted by Amy Adams (not verified) on

Hi Dave,
Tarot cards are European (not Mexican) and played all over the world for fun.
There is nothing more disturbing than ignorance.


Submitted by Ren (not verified) on

They certainly are used by occultists. Google it.