Ryerson shines a light on documentary photography
The Ryerson Image Centre puts a major spotlight on documentary photography tonight as it unveils its winter programming, featuring the work of artists Robert Burley, Phil Bergerson, Pierre Tremblay, and Elisa Julia Gilmour. The centrepiece of the four exhibitions is Burley's eerie documentation of the death of the film-based photography industry, including deserted Kodak plants, empty photo booths and other signs of film's decline.
Not to be outdone, Bergerson's search for signs of the American dream reads like a contemporary update on the road photographs of Stephen Shore and Joel Sternfeld from the 1970s. While Elisa Julia Gilmour's conceptual work with Kodak Ektachrome slides underscores the transience of film in more basic, non-economic terms. Together, the exhibits offer a challenging and often haunting look at the nature of film and the photographic enterprise.