Posts Tagged ‘Canada’

There are a group of photography exhibits now showing at the Ryerson Image Centre.  Two of them showcase older photos of Canada.  The largest exhibit is ‘Faraway Nearby’ and it consists of photographs of Canada from the New York Times photo archive…   25,000 vintage photos of Canada taken over the past 100 years have been gifted to Ryerson by Chris Bratty in honour of his father Rudolph (Rudy), a property developer in the GTA.   ‘Faraway Nearby’ is a wonderful selection of them covering a wide cross section of subjects.

vintage black and white photo of people in bath suits standing on diving boards beside a lake

below: There is a section devoted to tourist type photos that you would find in the travel section of a newspaper.  Yes, that’s an RCMP officer standing beside the car, a convertible with California plates.  I’d say it was kitschy to have the RCMP guy there but even today the red uniform of the RCMP is iconic; they are featured on many postcards and souvenirs.   Tourists still take photos with them I’m sure.

photo in an exhibit of a group of tourists in a convertible car with California plates parked beside the road and overlooking a mountain lake. An RCMP officer stands beside the car.

below:  Oh dear, Highland dancers and Native Americans all dressed up.   Is that the Banff Springs Hotel?  The exhibit taken as a whole is a fascinating look at Canadian history; how far we’ve come in some respects and how we haven’t really changed in others.

vintage black and white photo of a highland dancer with a line of native Americans in traditional dress behind her. Some teepees in the background, also a hotel.

below:  Loggers clearing their way through a sea of timber that is being guided into a newsprint mill in Hull Quebec, about 1946.  Unknown photographer.  (Almost all the photos are by ‘unknown’).

vintage black and white photo of two shirtless men on legs with poles as the move logs and timber by river to a newsprint paper mill on the other shore.

Being a newspaper, a large number of the subjects were political such as this photo of Joe Clark, Prime Minister of Canada from June 1979 to March 1980, on a visit to Cameroon  in the summer of 1979.

black and white photo from 1979 of Joe Clark, then Prime Minister of Canada, riding in a motorcade with the President of Cameroon, in Cameroon.

below: Prime Minister Trudeau (the first one) meeting President Nixon, “Tricky Dick”, of the USA.  Love the sunglasses! (or is that just a trick of the lighting?).

vintage photo of Richard Nixon, President of the United States, greeting Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

below: While on the topic of the Trudeau’s, here’s Margaret with Fidel Castro.  Castro is holding Margaret’s youngest son Michel.  The photo was taken in Havana in 1976 when the Trudeau’s were in Cuba on a 4 day state visit.

vintage black and white photo of Margaret Trudeau and Fidel Castro. Castro is holding one of the Trudeau sons.

below: There are also some photos taken during various Royal visits.  Here are a group of men by Lake Nipigon in 1919.  The man holding the dead duck (3rd from the left) is Edward, Prince of Wales (b.1894 – d.1972).   He was 25 years old in this picture.   On 20 January 1936 he became King Edward VIII but he abdicated the throne in December of the same year after reigning for only 326 days.

a vintage black and white photo of a group of men in northern Ontario, by a lake, one is holding a duck that has been shot

below: A photo by an unknown photographer for the Canadian War Records Office and the American Press Association, Vimy, France, April 1917.  The description of the photo reads: “Giving Fritz some of his own pills.  Canadians firing a German 4.2 on the retreating Boche.  Some of the guns left behind by the retreating Germans were in excellent condition, and the Canadians at once  undertook to return some of the shells to their former owners in the most effective manner.”

vintage world war one photo

below: A slightly lighter look at war, this time WW2.  Photograph by Nat Turofsky (d. 1956) for Alexandra Studio.  Distributed by the Star Newspaper Service and the New York Times.  Location unknown. 1939.  Nat and his brother Lou were well known Toronto photographers in their day. Back in 2009, The Torontoist published an excellent story about them and the Alexandra Studio which they owned.

The description of the photo reads: “Shouldering guns instead of hockey sticks.  Member of the Toronto Maple Leaf hockey team, led by Bob Davidson, Goalie “Turk” Broda, and “Sweeney Shriner, marching into the trenches at a machine gun target range during a military training session.  The team is in constant training so that they will be ready for duty if called to the colors.”

vintage photo of men in Maple Leafs hockey sweaters walking through war trenches

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The second, and smaller, exhibit is ‘The Notman Studio:  1858-1915’.  William Notman was a photographer based in Montreal who traveled across Canada documenting what he saw.   He was also a studio photographer who took hundreds of portraits.   This is a small sample of his work.

below:  ‘Ice Castle’ about 1857, Montreal Quebec, Albumen print.

old photo of a large ice castle

below: ‘Esquimalt Dry Dock’, 1887, Victoria B.C. Albumen print.   You’ll have to pardon the reflections in the pictures.  The glass in the frames acts like a mirror and although I have tried to minimize the amount of reflection, getting rid of it entirely was not always possible.

vintage photo, 1887 ship being built, wood, in Victoria B.C.

below: Standing outside his teepee with his rifle and his horse.

vintage photo of a native American man in traditional clothes holding a rifle and a horse and a lead. Standing outside a teepee

below: There were a series of Cariboo Hunting photos.  They were small and all focused on the two men.   Especially considering their age, they are in excellent condition and beautiful to look at.

vintage photo of two men hunting caribou. Resting with their rifles.

below: ‘Little Champlain Street’  1890, Quebec City.   I looked for photos of Toronto in the collection that was on display but there weren’t any.

vintage albumen print photo, 1890, Little Champlain street in Quebec City. row houses, kids in the street

below: There is an incredible amount of detail in the above picture so I cropped it quite a bit to highlight some of the details.   The shabby brick and plaster row houses, the solitary street light, the planks that form the narrow road, and the kids wearing hats as they keep an eye on the photographer.  Although it is Quebec City, I can imagine parts of Toronto looking quite similar at the time.

details of a vintage photo, street scene, kids, row houses,

In case you were wondering, albumen prints refers to a process whereby the photographic paper that is used to print the images from a negative was made using egg whites.  The main constituent of egg whites is the protein albumen.  It is sticky and forms a glossy finish when it dries.  The stickiness of the albumen is used to bind salt (sodium chloride, your basic table salt, or ammonium chloride) to the paper.  Once the paper dries, it is dipped into a solution of silver nitrate thereby making the paper sensitive to UV light.   This method was developed in 1847 and was the first commercially viable method of producing photographic paper.  It remained in use until the 20th century.

By the entrance to the Notman exhibit is this wonderful, and still relevant, quote attributed to William Notman: “To consider Photography a mere mechanical art, is a great mistake.  The too prevalent desire for cheapness, and the ease with which a little may be done in Photography, has induced many to embrace the profession lacking the necessary qualifications…”

Both exhibits continue until 10 Dec 2017.

July 1st falls on a Friday AND the weather forecast is looking good!  I hope you have a chance to enjoy the day, however you choose to celebrate it.   Happy Canada Day weekend! UPDATE – I uploaded this last night. This morning (July 1) I woke up to the sound of rain. Oh dear. Lesson learned, check your facts first!  Maybe it’s just a good excuse to sleep in or have an extra cup of coffee while you laze around in your jammies!

Canadian flag flying high at harbourfront, over the heads of people in a crowd

Canadian flag, store in Chinatown

Canadian flag draped over the front of a food truck parked at the side of a street in downtown Toronto

Canadian flag

Canadian flag draped over the side of an old car

Election day – Monday 19th October

 

Three federal election campaign signs on a front yard, one each for the Liberals, Conservatives and NDP

Three federal election campaign signs outside a restaurant, one each for the Liberals, Conservatives and NDP

I was going to post the election results in Toronto ridings but this picture (screenshot from the Toronto Star website) says it all much more concisely.  Red = Liberal and blue = Conservative.  The blue riding top center is Thornhill.  The other two that are only partly in the picture are Milton in the west and Markham-Stouffville in the east.

map of Toronto federal election results showing almost all seats were won by the Liberal party

I’ve taken a screenshot of the map showing the voter turnout in the Toronto and area ridings, again from the Toronto Star.   The darker the purple, the higher the turnout.  The colours in the screenshot didn’t always match the colours on the website, so I added the numbers (the percent turnout for each riding).  As you can see, turnout varied between 59% and 76%; as a percentage, more people voted in city center ridings than in suburban ridings.

 

map showing the voter turnout in each riding in the Toronto area in the 2015 federal election

Landscape paintings depicting scenes from the top of North America to the tip of South America
are on display at the Art Gallery of Ontario until Sept 2015.   The collection centers on just over 100 works that were painted between the early 1800s and the eary 1900s.

7 or 8 people in an art gallery looking at paintings that are hanging on the walls

below:  part of a painting, ‘Montmorency Falls’ by Guido Carmignani (Parma Italy 1838-1909)
oil on canvas,  1869

close up of part of a painting - Montmorency Falls by Guido Carmignani 1869, Italian hunters at the base of the falls (even though they are in Quebec) in summer time.

below: Fall Plowing, by Grant Wood (b. and d. Iowa USA),  1931, oil on canvas

painting on a wall in an art gallery of fields being harvested by Grant Wood

 

A man is looking at a wall of paintings. The wall is painted red. It is in an art gallery

close up of part of a painting including part of the intricately carved frame.  THree men getting into a boat at the edge of a river

 below: part of “The Sidewheeler, the ‘City of St. Paul’ on the Mississippi River, Dubuque Iowa”
by Alfred Thompson Bricher (American), oil on canvas,  1872

close up of part of an oil painting showing an old paddle wheel steam boat on a river

Protest, rally and march
from Queens Park to Allan Gardens,
5 July 2015

jobs, justice and climate action protest march - the lead banner of the march.  It says Jobs, Justice and the Climate. It is red with white letters and is almost the full width of the street.  A few drummers and dancers are in front of the banner.  Many people with signs and flags are behind the banner.
jobs, justice and climate action protest march -  a man is making large bubbles that float towards the  front of the parade.

below:  A protester prepares to carry a large effigy of Kathleen Wynne, leader of the provincial Liberal party, with the help of some colleagues.

A couple of people are helping a woman prepare to wear a large effigy.  A very large head of a woman wearing dark rimmed glasses.

below: David Suzuki being interviewed by CTV.

David Suzuki is being interviewed by a man from CTV.  A few people are standing behind.

Three young women are making signs to carry in the protest march.  Two are in green T-shirts.  One of the signs says '73 North Americans own the same as 1/2 the continent.'  Jobs, Justice and Climate protest rally and march.

A person wearing a sign that says 'Another photographer marching for #jobsjusticeclimate on his back.

At a protest rally, two women are posing for a picture.  One has a large cut out around her face that makes her face look like a large yellow flower

a groupd of young people standing beside a large yellow banner that says 'Youth marching for Climate Justice' at a protest rally in front of the Ontario parliament buildings.

below: The base of Sir John A. Macdonald’s statue provides a step up for photographers
(It looks like only some of them wanted to take my picture!)

Many photographers are standing on the base of a statue while they wait for a protest march to begin in Toronto at Queens Park

Two people with protest signs on their backs.  One says 'Act like you live here' and the second says 'Stop Debating, Start acting'

A group of people at a protest rally.  Somone is holding up a sign with a picture of Stephen Harper neck deep in water with the words, 'What climate change blub blub blub'

At the jobs, justice and climate action protest rally, a man wearing a hat that looks like an owl head.  He's carrying a sign that says 'Give a hoot'
  below:  ‘Protect Turtle Island’ signs waiting for the march to begin.  North America is referred to as Turtle Island by many Native tribes, Native rights activists, and environmental groups.

A large parachute shaped piece of fabric in bright orange and white lies flat on the ground.  In it are three signs waiting for people to begin marching in the jobs, justice and climate change march.  The signs say 'Protect Turtle Island'

A group of people holding a large red banner that says 'Canadian Unitarians for social justice'

Three women at a protest rally.

A young girl in a bright red Tshirt runs in front of some protesters, one of whom is holding a sign that says Hope.

At the jobs, justice and climate action protest rally, four people hold a banner that says 'TTC riders, a voice for ttc riders' and it has a picture of a street car on it as well.

below:  $15 now refers to raising the minimum wage to $15/hour

jobs, justice and climate action protest march -  a man is holding a sign that says $15 Now.  It is white with red letters.  It stands out because most of the signs around him are all bright red.

jobs, justice and climate action protest march -  a group of people at Queens Park, the back of the statue of Sir John A. Macdonald can be seen.  One woman is holding a sign that says Jobs Justice Climate.  Another person holds up a picture of Pope Francis.  They are all getting ready to march down University Ave.

below: After the rally at Queens Park, protesters marched south on University Ave.
and then east on Dundas St.

policemen on bikes block the street as they direct a march through city streets

jobs, justice and climate action protest march - some of the people marching, a white haired man is holding an orange flag that says Socialistworld.net  Some people are walking their bikes.

A man is walking in a protest march while holding one end of a banner.  He is wearing a large yellow chicken head and a T shirt that says 'this is what a vegan looks like'

two women are walking in the jobs, justice and climate action march in Toronto and both are carrying signs.  One has a large peace symbol and the words 'vegan for life' and the the other sign says 'animal agriculture is responsible for 91 percent of amazon rainforest destruction

A number of women in a protest march, each is holding a different coloured sign and each has a different letter - together they spell 'yes we can'.  Each women is also wearing a coloured box that matches the colour of her sign and each box represents a differ aspect of social policy such as gender equality, primary education, poverty eradication, healthcare,

A diverse group of people walk in a protest march in Toronto

A man in a red shirt pumps his fist in the air as he walks in a protest march

A man is holding up a protest sign with Prime Minister Stephen Harper's head on three monkeys along with the worsd, Hear no science, speak no science, see no science.

Marchers on the jobs, justice and climate action protest march who are carrying a large orange banner that says We have solutions.

 

Two middle aged men walking a in protest.  One of them has a sign that says 'radicalized by Harper'

A large number of people walking in a protest march carrying signs and banners

A man wearing a green party T-shirt is carry a large sign that says 'carbon tax yes'.  There are other green party supporters with him as they walk in a protest march in Toronto

jobs, justice and climate action protest march on University Ave showing many people walking.  Two are holding large white signs with orange letters.  One says Let hope prevail.  The other says There is no Planet B.

jobs, justice and climate action protest march  - a young woman in a head scarf holds a red and white sign, the woman behind her is wearing a floppy hat and there is a sign that says Be Brave in large capital letters above her head.

Stop Bill C-51 Protest and Rally
Nathan Phillips Square, noon, Saturday 14 March

It was a foggy and damp morning before the protest.

Nathan Phillips square on a foggy wet day.  Greyness.  There are a few people under the stage overhang but otherwise the square is empty
but the rain held off once the rally started.

View of a protest from the back of a stage. The backs of 4 photographers is to the camera. They are taking pics of the crowd.

A young woman is holding a piece of white fabric on which words have been printed:  "Fuck bill C-51" is in larger letters.

“Protect our Charter Rights. Fuck you Harper”

 

Two  young girls are holding protest signs.  One says "Stop Harpers Secret Police" and the other says "Stop C51".

Stop C51″. “Stop Harper’s secret police”

 

A coalition of groups under the banner of StopC51.ca organized a “National Day of Action”.  Included in the events were protest rallys in cities across Canada. 

crowd shot at a protest

A group of 3 people.  A woman on the right is holding a purplish grey umbrella.  The other 2 people are holding protest signs.

People at a protest rally.  One man has duct tape over his mouth and he is holding a placard that says "Citizen journalism will be silenced by Bill C-51"

“Citizen journalism will be silenced by Bill C-51”

 

A man is holding a placard that says Don't Let the Terror Win at a protest

“Don’t let the terror win”

 

A protester is holding a hand written sign that says #rejectfear

#rejectfear

 

A man is handing out protest signs that say "Say no to Islamophobia"

“Say no to Islamophobia. Say no to war.”

A crowd of people at a Canadian protest rally

A boy on his mother's shoulders is holding a sign with a picture of Lisa on it.

The other side of the Lisa Simpson sign are the words “I don’t want a big brother”

 

protesters at a rally.

A group of people around Henry Moore's sculpture "the Archer" in Nathan Phillips Square.  They are there for the anti Bill C51 protest.  A couple are sitting and talking to each other.  Others are standing under umbrellas.

blog_bill_grannys

The Toronto Raging Grannies were also there with their own unique sound.

 

Photograph ers are shooting a man who has a flag around his neck

signs lying on the steps as people walk around.

“Not the Canada we want or need”

Douglas Coupland’s
everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything
at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Queen St. West
until 19 April 2015

Secret Handshake
What makes Canadians Canadian?
What do we identify with that others don’t recognize?

close up of part of a quilt.  One of the squares is made from fabric with a Toronto Maple Leafs hockey player on it.  Old chrome hubcaps have been added to the quilt.

A quilt made of plain beige fabric into which dreamcatchers of various sizes have been incorporated.
A low hutch with three drawers.  The handle of each drawer is on old pepsi advertisement on an old bar from a door - the kind of bar that you would push on to open the door.

 One of the rooms of the exhibit features Coupland’s re-imagining of famous Canadian paintings,  paintings by Tom Thomson and Lawren Harris of the Group of Seven to name a couple.
In the center of the room is a black metal structure that is supposed to represent a damaged hydro transmission tower reminiscent of the ones damaged by the eastern Canada ice storm of 1998.

A large metal structure that is supposed to represent  a damaged hydro (electricity) transmission tower is in the center of a room.  There are paintings on the walls.

A large metal structure that is supposed to represent  a damaged hydro (electricity) transmission tower is in the center of a room.  There are paintings on the walls.

***

Growing up Utopian

A portion of three Douglas Coupland creations are visible.  In the foreground are numerous lego houses complete with yards and garages all laid out in a grid.  In the background are wood shelves with household articles from the past.  In the middle are lego towers in bright stripes and interesting shapes.
below: Towers, 2014
An urban jungle of imaginative lego towers created from selected parts of towers that were “crowd-sourced” at building events at the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Close up of some of the brightly coloured lego towers in the art exhibit

below: 345 Modern House, 2014
One hundred identical houses built from a kit that was first issued in 1969.

A grid of white lego bungalows with black roofs with detached garages, green lego lawns and red fences.

 

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