Saturday, May 9, 2009

Photo Gallery Hop & Libby Hague Review

With National Gallery of Canada director Marc Mayer arguing that there was no need for Canada to have a stand-alone photography museum, and the Contact Photography Festival on in full force, there's lots of prompts to think about photo as art form. My gallery column published in today's National Post looks at three exhibits that use photo in different ways.Here's an excerpt:

For several years, Toronto photographer Scott Johnston has directed his camera towards different parts of Hogtown. The results, a selection of which show at Arta to May 14, aren’t always high art, but they are often compelling. The draw of Johnston’s images comes from the fact that they lift a mirror to familiar scenes and settings, allowing us the time and space to consider what usually just flies past car windows or is glimpsed out of the corner of an eye during errands. Take, for example, Johnston’s standout wide-angle photograph spanning Union Station’s railway tracks, the Air Canada Centre and a condo contruction site. It’s a swath often divided into discrete categories by maps and minds, but here possesses the feel of a geological cross-section — a system, however erratic, in process.

Also, an exhibition by Libby Hague closes tomorrow at the Art Gallery of Mississauga. Yesterday, Torontoist published my review.

Image of Shai Kremer's work from the National Post

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