Previous shows | PIKTO | Photography Gallery Toronto, photography exhibits
The Bread with Honey
Show Date: March 4th to April 30th 2013
Opening Reception: Thursday March 21st 2013. 6pm-10pm
Winner of the 2012 Pikto Top Pick contest
Summary: An ancient metal mine in the former Yugoslavia is a conduit through which I examine the complexities of Kosovo’s recent independence.
Statement: The Stan Terg metal mine below the town of Trepça, Kosovo, was once the jewel of a giant Yugoslavian mining conglomerate. Power struggles in the 1990s which resulted in the breakup of Yugoslavia and culminated in Kosovo's civil war of 1999 crippled the operation. Since the end of the war Stan Terg has little more than survived, the victim of fallout from tensions between Kosovo's Serbian and Albanian population, political tensions between Kosovo and Serbia, and post-independence growing pains.
With few economic prospects in the region, miners in their fifties and sixties have been left to provide for their extended families. As they near the age of mandatory retirement, many I spoke with express a deep worry for the future well being of their family. While government and management remain hopeful that Stan Terg can regain some of its former stature, an atmosphere of uncertainty hangs in the streets of Trepça.
Through time, the mine has come to mirror the region's ethno-political strains. Often to the detriment of the operation itself, the forces at the mine's helm have tended to hold regional control. As a photographer, this relationship offered an entry point to further investigate- through the workers, their families, and the tired town at the mine’s threshold- the depth of the political and economic challenges facing the young country.
Show Date: November 1st November 30th 2012
Opening Reception: Thursday November 1st 2012. 6pm-10pm
ROUTE SOLITAIRE Images by Sami Siva Time after time I pack my bag and step out of the door, on a journey to unfamiliar destinations. Camera around my neck, loneliness is my shadow, and the open road my constant companion. Between snap shots of the world and the well trodden path, the trees and the landscapes along the way seem to share my solitary journey. Against the silhouettes of so many cities, roadside cafes, and the emptiness strung out along my route I seek the familiar, like the pebbles guiding me on a path I have sown many years ago on some long forgotten journey. As I shed my skin leaving behind memories, solitude becomes my most faithful friend along each mile that takes me further from home. Uncluttered, shadows of myself can be seen in the trees – rush, fear, fatigue, anxiety, loneliness, sorrow, joy, confusion. I have tried to capture the traces I have left behind, and Route Solitaire is the result.
The First 90 Seconds
October 1st - 31st 2012
Opening Thursday October 4th, 6pm-10pm
And then it begins. A commitment. A lifetime. A moment of the purest hope that two people can ever share about the possibility of something unconditional and un-ending.
The First 90 Seconds is a collection of images that have been created in the nascent moments of marriage. The joy, elation, relief, discomfort, hope, and humour caught in the first minute-and-a-half of marriage are so purely vulnerable and authentic, and make for some of the best images on a wedding day. The traditions we have attached to marriage ceremonies, and the feting of the new couple by friends, family, and loved ones is indicative of a larger hope that is oft overlooked in these relatively cynical times. The First 90 Seconds is a collection about beginnings and gambles of the heart, hope and the ultimate possibility that some things may indeed last forever.
Tara McMullen is a Toronto-based wedding and portrait photographer who, since entering the photography world in 2008, has shot more than 150 weddings in Canada, the US, and Europe. Tara's background as an ex-PhD candidate in Sociology has led her to approach her work with an eye to the subtleties of human interactions and the moments-between-moments that happen when no one else is looking. www.taramcmullen.com
Diary of a failed Project
Heather Morton Curates: Youth
Heather Morton Curates: Youth June 1-30 Opening: June 8, 6-10PM
Heather Morton has chosen 6 photographers who have work that ties to the theme of youth. There will be wide variety in the show: still life shooter Natasha V is providing an interpretation, Derek Shapton is showing landscapes, Lee Towndrow has shot a theatrical and inverted take on youth culture. Mark Peckmezian is well known for his B&W snapshots of sexy young things, Johan Hallberg-Campbell brings back portraits of young people from Attawapiskat and newcomer Rodrigo Daguerre has a stylized yet classic approach to his portraiture.
Naked People Clinging for their Lives
Sep 1- Sep 30, 2012
Opening Reception: September 13, 2012. 6-10pm
Forward by Jessica Algie
When you see something strange happening on the street, what is your first instinct? Is it to whip out your camera and take a picture? In Daniel Ehrenworth’s photo series, Naked People Clinging for Their Lives, something decidedly odd is going on. A tiny, naked figure dangles from an apartment balcony railing. Vehicles speed by with naked women clinging desperately to them. A spectator points skyward at a figure perilously hanging from the top of a tall building. You get the unsettling feeling you’re looking at snapshots of some bizarre phenomena, a breaking news story with no explanation. What the hell is going on? Is this some horrible new teen dare or cult ritual sweeping the city? Did these unfortunate naked people fall from the sky? It evokes the opening moments in a zombie film when the main character begins to realize that all is not right in the world. Daniel Ehrenworth is a Toronto-based photographer and gallery artist who also shoots a great deal of advertising and editorial work. He describes the two sides of his practice this way: “My gallery work is where I like to explore ideas about sex and death and my commercial work is where I like to tell jokes.” For Ehrenworth, the Naked People Clinging for their Lives series is the first time his commercial work and gallery work have crossed paths. “I guess it’s a visual joke about sex and death, a combination of realism and silliness, a kind of absurdity that made me constantly giggle.” Originally, Ehrenworth set out to make a self-promotion piece that would grab the attention of art directors and people in the commercial world, and so he used the two elements he was certain would draw people’s eyes, “naked people and the chance that somebody could be killed. It wasn’t intended to have any artistic merit. It was just meant to be a little bit of fun.” With Naked People Clinging for their Lives, Ehrenworth applies meticulous precision in replicating the un-composed qualities of vernacular snapshots such as the 90s looking date stamp added to the corner of two of the photographs. These techniques appear in both his gallery and commercial work. In the commercial and editorial world Ehrenworth is known for a particular photographic style that is quirky and colourful but also, at times, unfinished, snapshotty and raw. His gallery work explores surrealism, dreamscapes, sexuality, violence, and he often works in black and white. Ehrenworth’s interest in the language of vernacular photographs is visible in earlier gallery projects as well. In 2003 he completed ‘The Auditions Archive’, a series of rough-looking portrait photos purporting to be test shots from some long-forgotten casting call. Another element at play here is citizen journalism. “I was thinking of people sending in pictures of breaking news events on their phones and digital cameras.” However the news event being captured in Naked People Clinging for Their Lives falls into the realm of the surreal. Daniel is a huge fan of ‘sighting’ photographs, those grainy, out-of-focus pictures that abound on the Internet of UFO’s, sasquatches and sea monsters. “I love them because you only see a little bit, and it’s so titillating that it makes your imagination run wild.” This is where the real fun of the series lies, not in the moment but in the origin. The real fun is imaging how-in-the-hell those people found themselves desperately clinging for their lives, in the buff no less. The more you think about it, the more your imagination runs wild.
Bio: Daniel Ehrenworth works as both a commercial photographer and a photo based artist in Toronto, Canada. He has exhibited work at numerous galleries across Canada and was the co-curator of Stranger than Fiction: The Delicate Art of Faking History at the Forest City Gallery in 2007. His first book of photographs entitled Holocaust Dream was published by the MacLaren Art Centre in conjunction with a solo exhibition in April 2005. His second book Curse. Sleep. (That's the Thing About Trouble) was released in 2011. His artwork has been published in Maisonneuve, Applied Arts, Black and While Magaziine, numerous art blogs, and is collected among various private collectors throughout Canada and the United States. Daniel also works as a commercial photographer whose clients include Applied Arts, Canwest, Centennial College, Cottage Life, Entrepreneur Magazine, Fido/Nokia, Ford, Macleans, Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, Sport Chek, The Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto Life, Workopolis and Worldwide Short Film Festival. He has won awards for his work from the ADCC, Applied Arts Magazine, Luerzer's Archive, PDN, and Black and White Magazine.
CONTACT FEATURE SHOW: A Co-existence: Lost in the Wake of Zionism
Aaron Vincent Elkaim
MAY 1 - 31
OPENING: MAY 3, 6 - 10pm
The Jewish people arrived in the land now known as Morocco over 2000 years ago. Protected since the 7th century by the Islamic principle of tolerance they flourished, holding high positions in trade and government. The Star of David was a symbol all Moroccans shared in common, appearing on the currency and even the national flag. During the Holocaust when asked for a list of Jews, King Mohammed V declared, “We have no Jews in Morocco, only Moroccan citizens.”
In 1940 Morocco had 300,000 Jewish people, the largest population in the Arab World. Following World War II, Israel’s expansion marked the beginning of an exodus. Today, fewer than 5000 Jews remain.
This photographic project is a journey into the remnants of a culture. Documenting an epoch of Judaism existing in peace with Islam, Aaron Vincent Elkaim seeks to honour an important historical truth. Reviving memories of a past forgotten in the wake of Zionism, he tells a story at odds with current perceptions of both Jews and Arabs. Elkaim was drawn to this subject through his own family's history. His father was born in the Jewish Quarter of Marrakech and immigrated to Canada with his family in the 1960s.
April 1, 2012 - April 30, 2012
Opening: Thursday, April 5, 2012
The work I produce reflects my need for uncovering dark places and further feeds my desire to produce humanistic, palpable photography. I choose to work with photography on the deepest level possible to produce the best work that I can. I photograph things I feel and see, trying to give voice and meaning to the environment around me.
The foreclosure crisis has been widespread across America, in particular within the state of Florida where the recession has affected many families and forced many out of their homes. These images are a document of this ongoing crisis.
B. 1986 toronto
Mike Berube was raised in Toronto, where he is an established photographer. He initially gained recognition for his pictures in 2007 when he was commissioned to cover life in the slums in Kibera, Kenya. In 2008, the images would go on to receive recognition from world press photo. Mike’s distinct style of emotional, humanistic photography has characterized his work since. Mike's photographs explore themes of human, social and economic conflict on local and international scales.
By Vuk Dragojevic
March 1 - March 31, 2012
Opening: Thursday, March 1, 2012. 6pm - 10pm
Vuk Dragojevic is a Toronto based artist who works in a range of media including animation, video and photography. He has produced work that has been shown in group exhibits and festivals - both locally and abroad - as well as featured in print and online publications. This is his first solo show.
Belgrade House documents the people and places of my life in Belgrade and is driven by the personal and cultural struggle of going back to a place that is at once foreign and familiar.
I am interested in exploring the tension between geographical distance and emotional closeness. In the 12 years since my immigration to Toronto, at the age of 14, I have gone back to Belgrade on a regular basis, keeping strong ties with family and friends while forming new relationships here. This project stems from the sense of simultaneously belonging and standing out, of looking at a place as both an insider and an outsider.
Belgrade House shows people in private spaces, environments that I associate with family and childhood. It focuses on artifacts and relics that are closely related to memory and growing up. The series is an extension of my compulsion to collect and preserve the people, experiences, and places that are significant and meaningful to me.
The National Womb: Baby Boom in Nagorno Karabakh
Please join us for the opening reception of Anastasia Taylor-Lind's show "The National Womb: Baby Boom in Nagorno-Karabakh". She is the 2011 winner of the Pikto Top Pick competition and will receive $5,000 towards the production of her show.
Her series explores the Birth Encouragement Program in Nagorno-Karabakh, which distributes cash payments to newlyweds for each baby born with the aim of repopulating the region after the devastating 1991-1994 war.
Anastasia Taylor-Lind is an English/Swedish photographer based out of London, United Kingdom. She is represented by the VII Photo Agency.
The show will run from January 5, 2012 - February 29, 2012
Opening reception: January 21, 2012, 6pm-10pm