Vancouver – Journeys to the Edge Community Portraits & Exhibition

ARTIST STATEMENT       Journeys to the Edge – an exhibition of photography

An understated aspect of photography is that every portrait reveals not only a fundamental view of the subject in the photograph but also a glimpse of the visions, perceptions, beliefs and emotions of the photographer. As a resident of the Downtown Eastside in Vancouver, it is important for me as a photographer to participate in the community I reside in. Thus I conceived the idea of taking portraits of the individuals who are part of the Oppenheimer Park community. The portraits are taken in a studio setting with the subjects against a blank white background. This isolates them from the context of their real world and emphasizes their own uniqueness. This exhibition displays these portraits as well as reportage portraiture of people from places as diverse as Colombia, El Salvador, Haiti, Afghanistan and Soweto in South Africa. I conceived the idea of a “travelling” exhibition that would showcase the work of Journeys to the Edge from remote places — either in distance or culturally — from what is perceived as typical art environments. Journeys to the Edge reflects this wide diversity of cultures and shows lives and stories not captured by mainstream media.

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