The Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies’ Exposure 2016 free opening reception will be held this Saturday (Jan. 30), celebrating photography with three separate exhibitions.
The opening reception will include Point of View: Photographs Inspired by the Canadian Rockies; Through the Lens, a popular and highly acclaimed student photography program, and Back to the Land: Photographs by Jeremy Fokkens, as part of Exposure 2016, the Calgary, Banff, Canmore Photography Festival.
Point of View focuses on people who came to the Bow Valley to photograph, with one of those photographers being Ansel Adams in 1924.
“Some of the biggest names in photography from all over, including the U.S., Canada and as far away as Australia will be included,” said Whyte Museum curator of photography Craig Richards. “People are going to be a bit surprised because it’s photographs that are inspired by the Canadian Rockies. They might come in thinking they are just going to see a bunch of landscape photographs, but it is probably less than a third landscape photographs.”
Richards says it consists of a wide range of work that was created from many facets found in the Rockies.
“From portraits to photographer Steven Shore, who is one of the leading documentary photographers who came here in 1974 and stayed at the Timberline Hotel and photographed his hotel room and his meal – it’s such an eclectic mix of photographs coming from some of the biggest names,” Richards said.
Calgary-based photographer Jeremy Fokkens’ exhibit Back to the Land is an ongoing project consisting of photographs he’s taken, and will continue to take, across Canada. Fokkens is focusing on rural and smaller communities and the people who inhabit them.
“There’s going to be 10 pieces in the exhibition, the pieces themselves are quite large, the prints alone are 20 by 30 inches, and with the matting and framing they end up almost being 30 by 40, so quite large with a lot of detail,” Fokkens said.
“I chose these pieces because I wanted to create a really good narrative around what the project represents, and obviously with each person, that is highlighted in their stories. I didn’t want to just focus on agriculture or forestry, because I’m finding people in these specific industries in these provinces, so I’m trying to find a nice mix of storytelling and the people that are in these places and their stories.”
He started the project out of wanting to be proud of a body of work that he could call his own. Fokkens started photographing random strangers on the streets of Calgary, with the project turning into having a national scope.
“It was the same kind of thing as I’m doing with Back to the Land ... but then I thought if we got these really cool stories here, why not do it across the country? I did a test pilot by heading to southern Saskatchewan and found ranchers and beekeepers and fly fishing,” Fokkens said.
“The project is still in its infancy, I only started it about a year and a half ago. This is going to be a very long project and take quite a bit of time to complete because Canada is such a large vast country.”
Opening reception, Saturday (Jan. 30). Museum members at 6 p.m., general opening at 7 p.m.
Point of View: Photographs Inspired by the Canadian Rockies
Jan. 30 to March 27, main gallery
From traditional photographs of the Canadian Rockies by Ansel Adams and Bruce Barnbaum to social documentary work by Sylvia Plachy, Barbara Spohr and Stephen Shore, this exhibition examines photography inspired by landscape of grand scale.
Through the Lens
Jan. 30 to March 27, main gallery
Through the Lens immerses Bow Valley students in the creative process of traditional and digital photography and encourages participants to experiment and learn about themselves, their community and the exciting medium of visual communication.
Back to the Land: Photographs by Jeremy Fokkens
Jan. 30 to March 27, Rummel Room
Photographer Jeremy Fokkens has traveled extensively photographing people, their cultures and the environments they live in. His international travels inspired Fokkens to explore his own country with fresh eyes, and a desire to show the beauty in the mundane.