Three Montréal Photographers＋
Curator: Robert Graham
Virtual Curator-guided Tour: Thurs. May 6 at 5 pm
Online Art Hive: Sat. May 29 from 10 am to 11 am
Exhibition: May 7 to 29, 2021
Three Montréal Photographers+ is a retrospective exhibition of photography by three Montréal-based photographers ─ Tom Gibson, Donigan Cumming and Michel Campeau – whose work has been written about and collected by curator and critic Robert Graham. Their work is presented along with several pictures, also from his collection, by three photographers from elsewhere ─ Eadweard Muybridge (British, 1830-1904), Miroslav Tichý (Czech, 1926-2011) and Martin Parr (British, 1952- ).
In his essay in the accompanying exhibition catalogue, Robert Graham sets out his critical approach. As he has observed, photographs in series and groups reveal, through repetition and pattern, the artist’s underlying interests, and the conjunction of the latter group of photographers brings aspects of the initial three into relief. Each artist practises a rhetoric which helps us understand how we think through photography. In curating this exhibition, Graham was interested in the relationship of image to knowledge, and how one supports the other in a manner similar to the way in which what he metaphorically calls the “illustration” and the “caption” are linked together. In this way, photography fosters a certain kind of knowledge; indeed the spatial information the photograph provides is its own kind of geography, which has been described as “the eye of history”.
Robert Graham is a writer, curator and critic in the visual arts, particularly photography. He approaches the medium not primarily as a fine art but as an activity, bound to a technology, which is expressed in a variety of connected ways. Since 1980, Robert Graham’s work has appeared in Parachute and numerous other art publications, and he has written exhibition catalogues for le Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and elsewhere, essay collections, and several editions of Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal. He holds a graduate degree from McGill University in Communications, has lectured on photography criticism at Concordia University, and is an affiliate member of the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University. Robert Graham was born in Montréal in 1950 and has lived in Westmount with his wife, Sharon Sparling, since 1986. Now retired, he maintained a professional career in the financial planning industry while also writing on art and photography. More information, including his writings, can be found at www.robertgraham.ca.