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The Canadian Photography Institute presents two new exhibitions
David McMillan, Winnipeg, Manitoba, 1979, dye coupler print (Ektacolor), 40.6 × 50.8 cm; image: 36.7 × 46.4 cm. National Gallery of Canada. Purchased 1982.

OTTAWA.- A thought-provoking exhibition presenting important trends in photography between 1960 and 2000 is on view at the National Gallery of Canada. Photography in Canada, 1960–2000, provides an overview of the diverse range of photographic practices and production in this country over a forty year period. Edward Burtynsky, Suzy Lake, Jeff Wall and Angela Grauerholz are just some of the influential artists featured in the exhibition, which was organized by the Canadian Photography Institute of the National Gallery of Canada.

“The variety, width and breadth of photographic culture in Canada is extraordinary,” said NGC Director and CEO, Marc Mayer. “The four decades covered in this exhibition were particularly fertile for the photographic medium in Canada. It was a thoroughly fascinating time and we are delighted to present this exhibition during the 150th anniversary of Confederation.”

“One of the Institute's main missions is to promote and encourage Canadian photography. Photography in Canada, 1960-2000 is an excellent opportunity to share the images and ideas of great photographers from our collection,” said Canadian Photography Institute Director, Luce Lebart.

Several important achievements in photography took place between 1960 and 2000. In addition to major documentary projects undertaken at this time, photography became an important contemporary art medium. Artists performed for the camera, mixed text and images, made photographic sculptures, combined photography with printmaking techniques, and used light boxes to display imagery. The medium was employed to question social norms and notions of truth and authority, and explore issues of identity, gender and sexuality. Andrea Kunard, Associate Curator of Photographs with the Canadian Photography Institute, selected more than 100 images taken by 71 photographers to illustrate the tremendous variety in what artists photographed; and how they created and displayed their photos.

“As much as “Photography in Canada, 1960-2000 celebrates a diversity of photographic practices,” said Ms. Kunard, “it also shows the development of photography as a contemporary art form and chronicler of modern life.”

Kunard arranged the images thematically, as opposed to chronologically, to better explore how artists handled nature, portraiture, sexuality and city life. All the photographs featured in the exhibition are from the National Gallery of Canada collections which include the former Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography collection and the NFB Still Photography Division collection.

Kunard organized a smaller exhibition, which also opens today, in the space adjacent to the Photography in Canada, 1960–2000 exhibition. PhotoLab2: Women Speaking Art, invites visitors to explore the power of language through 14 video and photographic works by Lorna Boschman, Susan Britton, Sara Diamond, Guerrilla Girls, Jenny Holzer, Mary Kunuk, Shelley Niro, Lorna Simpson, Lisa Steele and Carrie Mae Weems.

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