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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Final day of CONTACT

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A New City by Angela Del Buono at CONTACTIt’s your last chance to check out this year’s CONTACT Toronto Photography Festival as most of the exhibits wrap up today. The theme this year was “Between Memory and History,” which led many photographers to focus on historic sites and spaces that hold meaning to them. Here are a couple you shouldn’t miss.

Angela Del Buono‘s A New City points the camera at Bramalea, the city Del Buono grew up in and one with identity problems. This exhibit connects the photographer’s memories to places, and examines the urban planning of the suburbs. A New City is at the Gladstone, directly above Derek Shapton‘s Here, which also explores the locations of childhood remembrances. Titles such as “We Thought We Saw Ghosts, 1977-82” and “Buried the Hamsters, 1985” cause the viewer to put people and events into otherwise ghostly, empty spaces.

Jeff Thomas has two exhibits at CONTACT: Drive-By at the University of Toronto Art Centre and Don’t Mess with the Pediment at the Stephen Bulgar Gallery. Both examine, criticize, and recontextualize the image of the “Indian.” Drive-By features images taken out the window of a car, while Don’t Mess with the Pediment aims the camera at stereotypical images of Native people carved into the architecture of Toronto.

And if you haven’t already, make sure to take a walk under the Gardiner at the foot of Spadina to experience Rodney Graham’s Tree Portraits on the columns that hold up the expressway. That, as well outdoor exhibits such as Robert Burley’s mural outside MOCCA, Raffaela Mariniello’s images on the fence of the Italian Consulate, and Suzy Lake’s self-portraits on the AGO construction hoarding, will stay up throughout the summer.

CONTACT has announced that next year’s theme will be “Still Revolution,” and will focus on the foundations and evolution of photography as well as imagery that reflects pervasive change.