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A Telling Portrait: The Work And Collection Of Michael Mitchell

April 29 – May 31, 2015
Student Gallery, Ryerson Image Centre

Working with prominent Canadian photographer, filmmaker and writer Michael Mitchell, second-year students from Ryerson University’s Film and Photography Preservation and Collections Management program explore the artist’s rich and diversified career in the context of his personal photography collection. This exhibition, accompanied by a catalogue and digital publication, juxtaposes a selection of Mitchell’s own work alongside nineteenth and twentieth century photographs from his collection, and excerpts from his prolific writings.

Generously supported by the Howard and Carole Tanenbaum Family Foundation.





Event(s):

Public Reception

Wednesday, May 7
6:00 – 8:00 PM

A featured exhibition of the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival

A black square in the middle of the desert
Fig. 1

Michael Mitchell, Black Square: Alberta Badlands, Brooks, 1979, chromogenic print. Courtesy of the artist

A circular lobby with two black doors and white walls
Fig. 2

Photographer unknown, Art Deco Luggage Department, 1940, gelatin silver print. Courtesy of Michael Mitchell

A wall display in a shop: a shelf of blue books and pamphlets, a stuffed animal, tshirts and hats, and a cash register
Fig. 3

Michael Mitchell, Gift Store, Columbia Ice Fields, Jasper. Alberta, 1985, chromogenic print. Courtesy of the artist

A woman in a bathing suit applies suncreen
Fig. 4

Unknown, Actress Bette Davis on a Film Set, c. 1937, gelatin silver print. Courtesy of Michael Mitchell

A man with curly hair and a beard stands in the middle of a cluster of mirrors in a photo studio
Fig. 5

Michael Mitchell, Self-portrait, c. 1983, colour instant print (Polaroid). Courtesy of the artist

Artist Bio

Michael Mitchell

This exhibition presents a selection of photographs from Michael Mitchell’s rich and varied career as a photographer, writer and filmmaker, as well as nineteenth- and twentieth-century photographs from his personal collection along with various excerpts from his prolific writings. Highlighting his education and professional background in anthropology, this project celebrates Mitchell’s complex approach to the medium of photography and his active and long-term commitment to Toronto’s photographic community. This show seeks to reveal Mitchell’s approach to producing and collecting photographs by focusing on three key themes evident throughout his work and his collection: portraits,

Installation Shots

Wide shot of the student gallery with a black bench in the middle
Fig. 1

A Telling Portrait: The Work and Collection of Michael Mitchell (installation view), 2015 © Eugen Sakhnenko, Ryerson Image Centre

An arrangement of photographs in black frames
Fig. 2

A Telling Portrait: The Work and Collection of Michael Mitchell (installation view), 2015 © Eugen Sakhnenko, Ryerson Image Centre

A large photo of a woman's face, two smaller photos, and three tiny square photos
Fig. 3

A Telling Portrait: The Work and Collection of Michael Mitchell (installation view), 2015 © Eugen Sakhnenko, Ryerson Image Centre 

Sponsors

A featured exhibition of the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival