The Contact photography festival is about to descend on Toronto featuring 500 local, national and international artists — throughout May, any and every surface that you can hang something off of is about to be covered by a photograph. People can make their own lists of what to see from the scads of shows (in 200 venues ranging from the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art to neighbourhood coffee shops) by combing through the catalogue.
Here are some queer highlights to get you started.
The theme of Contact this year is memory, and the Museum of Canadian Contemporary Art (952 Queen St W) is playing host to one of the feature exhibitions of the festival: Between Memory and History, which opens Thu, May 1 (reception from 7pm to 10pm). The list of participating artists is a mile long, including Robert Burley, Luc Delahaye, Chi Peng and Alessandra Sanguinetti — pretty impressive to boot. But one name is enough to get me to go see anything — Nan Goldin.
The Olga Korper Gallery (17 Morrow Ave) plays host to a survey of Robert Mapplethorpe’s work in the austerely titled Aufhebung, which also opens May 1 (6pm to 9pm). And if austerity is your thing, check out Arnaud Maggs’ Contamination at the Susan Hobbs Gallery (137 Tecumseth St), opening Thu, May 8 (7pm to 9pm).
Peter Kingstone’s video and photography exhibition 100 Stories About My Grandmother at Gallery TPW (56 Ossington Ave) involves hustlers reminiscing on their aged relatives and opens May 9 (7pm to 9pm). Across town, in the middle of the gay village in the upstairs gallery of This Ain’t the Rosedale Library (483 Church St), is Christos Tsirbas’s show on gay men and aging called Ready for Prime Time, shown with John Hyslop’s abstract nudes Lies our Mothers Told Us, opening Wed, May 15 (7pm to 9pm).