FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

MOCCA, UTAC and Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival Present a Special Two-Venue Exhibition of Extraordinary Photographs by Internationally Acclaimed Artists Exploring the Theme: PUBLIC

TORONTO, Ont., April 27, 2012 - The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA) is pleased to host the launch of Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival 2012 with two of the festival’s six primary exhibitions this year: PUBLIC: Collective Identity | Occupied Spaces and STREET VIEW, in our galleries from April 28 – June 3, 2012. The festival launch and the public opening reception will take place on Friday April 27, from 7 – 11p.m.

In an age of social media, global urbanization, protest and revolution, photography plays a crucial role in mediating our understanding of contemporary life. This two-venue exhibition, PUBLIC: Collective Identity | Occupied Spaces, presents images from around the world to explore the ways we articulate our identity in public, and the tensions that arise from the occupation of public space. The MOCCA Main Space will feature Collective Identity with works by Philippe Chancel, Cheryl Dunn, Barry Frydlender, Baudouin Mouanda, Jon Rafman, Bill Sullivan, and Michael Wolf.  At the University of Toronto Art Centre (UTAC), Occupied Spaces will feature works by Tarek Abouamin, Ai Weiwei, Ariella Azoulay, Benjamin Lowy, Sanaz Mazinani, Richard Mosse, Sabine Bitter | Helmut Weber, and Noh Suntag. PUBLIC: Collective Identity | Occupied Spaces is curated by Matthew Brower, David Liss and Bonnie Rubenstein, and organized by MOCCA, Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival and UTAC.

Concurrently MOCCA also presents STREET VIEW, for our widely acclaimed National Gallery of Canada at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art program. Spanning six decades, from the 1930s to the 1980s, STREET VIEW reflects the development of street photography as a record of city life and shifting social and economic conditions. Drawn from the collection of the National Gallery of Canada, this exhibition highlights the work of Harry Callahan, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Bruce Gilden, Leon Levinstein, Helen Levitt, Lisette Model, and Weegee, whose seminal visions helped to describe the 20th-century urban landscape. STREET VIEW is organized by MOCCA and the National Gallery of Canada, and presented in conjunction with the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

The CONTACT public installation in MOCCA’s courtyard this year is a mural by Toronto photographer Scott McFarland.  Part of the series Repatriation, this large-scale photographic mural considers notions of nationalism, public duty, community, the media, heroism and sacrifice as pictorial subjects. Photographed in the manner of large-format street photography, McFarland creates a portrait of a repatriation ceremony for a fallen Canadian soldier returning home to Canada after being killed while on active duty in Afghanistan. A composite digital technique enables the artist to document a complete view of the scene. This CONTACT Public installation is curated by Bonnie Rubenstein, and presented by MOCCA and the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival with support from Gluskin Sheff + Associates Inc.

Links / URLs

Quotes

  • David Liss, Artistic Director and Curator, MOCCA
    “MOCCA is excited to evolve our partnership with CONTACT to include UTAC says David Liss, MOCCA’s Artistic Director and Curator. “It has been both challenging and rewarding to develop this complex two venue exhibition and we are grateful to Bonnie and Matthew for their expertise with leading-edge developments and current issues in photography.

 

  • Matthew Brower, Curator, University of Toronto Art Centre
    “Working with MOCCA and CONTACT on this project has allowed us to create a powerful dialogue between the two venues,” says Matthew Brower, Curator, University of Toronto Art Centre. “The works in each space form a coherent curatorial statement yet there are many themes and issues that carry across the venues, offering an enriched experience to viewers who view both parts.”

 

  • Bonnie Rubenstein, Artistic Director, Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival
    “We are very pleased to unite two of our longstanding partners to present a major exhibition of works by international artists,” says CONTACT’s Artistic Director Bonnie Rubenstein. “As a focal point of this year’s theme PUBLIC, it includes a range of socio-political perspectives from collective harmony to civil discontent.”

Tags / Keywords
Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, MOCCA, National Gallery of Canada, NGC, NGC@MOCCA,  Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival, UTAC, Public, Collective Identity | Occupied Spaces, Philippe Chancel, Cheryl Dunn, Barry Frydlender, Baudouin Mouanda, Jon Rafman, Bill Sullivan, Michael Wolf, Tarek Abouamin, Ai Weiwei, Ariella Azoulay, Benjamin Lowy, Sanaz Mazinani, Richard Mosse, Sabine Bitter | Helmut Weber, Noh Suntag. Scott McFarland.

About the National Gallery of Canada at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art
The National Gallery of Canada at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art is a three-year program that will see the two institutions co-organize and co-present a series of exclusive exhibitions in MOCCA’s newly-renovated project space, drawn from the NGC’s exceptional contemporary art collection. These will include the presentation of single works, new acquisitions or full-scale exhibitions designed to complement MOCCA’s existing programming. Learn more about the NGC@MOCCA program.

About the NGC http://www.gallery.ca/

About MOCCA
The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art was founded from the former Art Gallery of North York in 1999, with the mandate to exhibit, research, collect, and promote innovative art by Canadian and non-Canadian artists whose works engage and reflect the relevant stories of our times. In 2005, MOCCA relocated to the West Queen West Art + Design District in downtown Toronto, in the heart of one of North America’s most dynamic arts communities and functions effectively as a nucleus of energies for cultural production and exchange. Since 2006, MOCCA draws 40,000 visitors annually.

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Supporters
The National Gallery of Canada at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art
is generously supported by AXA Art Canada, Cineplex Media, World MasterCard® and The Ouellette Family Foundation. The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art is grateful for the patronage of THE ART DEPT., a leadership circle of MOCCA patrons.

All programs and activities of the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art are supported by Toronto Culture, the Ontario Arts Council, the Canada Council for the Arts, BMO Financial Group, Cisco Canada, individual memberships and private donations.

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416.395.7490
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