Contact 2012 Launch Party

Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival
Opening: Friday, April 27, 7–10 p.m.
MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY CANADIAN ART

The crowd with Darcy Killeen in the background (right). Photo: Mauricio Contreras-Paredes

The 16th CONTACT exhibition includes 200 venues, from small cafes to leading art museums, showing about 1000 artists all over the city with the help of many partners, artists and volunteers. “This is the largest photography festival in world, and next year we try to make it the best,” said  Darcy Killeen, Executive Director of Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

Baudouin Mouanda, from the series La Sapologie. Installation view. Photo: Nicholas Liang

Duncan Hannay, Senior VP of Marketing at Scotiabank, the title sponsor for six years of CONTACT, stylishly talked about richness at the press preview: “Photography really is a powerful medium that captures the richness of a single moment in time. Photographs give people a chance to see the world through their eyes and show the richness of the communities which we live and work in.” Scotiabank’s 2011 award of $50 000, along with the publication of a beautiful album, goes to Lynn Cohen, whose show, Nothing is Hidden, is on display in Design Exchange (May 3–June 30).

Michael Wolf, Compression, installation view Photo: Nicholas Liang

Installation view. Photo: Mauricio Contreras-Paredes

Bonnie Rubenstein, Artistic Director of CONTACT introduced the program for 2012: “Stimulated by the renewed global interest in street photography, this year’s festival explores the theme ‘Public’  in a series of primary exhibitions, site-specific installations, and events across the city. Drawing attention to social and political issues that are framed by photographic images, the works presented challenge the distinctions between our private lives and the public sphere. CONTACT 2012 highlights how photography shapes collective experience and makes things public.”

Bonnie Rubenstein, Artistic Director of CONTACT in front of Bill Sullivan’s Down. Photo: Nicholas LiangDavid Liss, Artistic Director of Mocca. Photo: Mauricio Contreras-Paredes

David Liss, Artistic Director of Mocca, thanked everyone involved, mentioned the many educational events and workshops  attached to CONTACT and wished the “best year ever” to all.

Philippe Chancel in front of his work Arirang. Photo: Nicholas Liang

Matthew Teitelbaum, Director of AGO (one of the partners for CONTACT 2012). Photo: Nicholas Liang

Installation view. Photo: Mauricio Contreras-ParedesInstallation view. Photo: Mauricio Contreras-Paredes

 For Album (exhibited in AGO, as well as in Waiting Room), Max Dean was at Mocca’s opening  and will travel in a VW Beetle to selected locations around Toronto to give away 500 family photo albums he collected over the past 10 years. He calls it, “public installation on wheels.”

Max Dean’s “public installation on wheels,” the Album. Photo: Nicholas Liang

Indeed, there are photos everywhere, in subway stations, at Pearson Airport, on billboards, on street walls, everywhere! So open your eyes, put your shoes on and get out there! You will surely need the whole month of May, and in some cases beyond, to see all!

Scott McFarland in front of his mural at Mocca, Corner of the Courageous, Repatriation Ceremony for Sergeant Martin Goudreault, Grenville St., Toronto, Ontario, June 9th, 2010.

 Text by Emese Krunak-Hajagos

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