The McMichael Canadian Art Collection presents
Louie Palu: Distant Early Warning
in partnership with the
Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival
Jerry cans with fuel and a caribou head with Arctic Char drying on its antlers seen at a base camp for Canadian Rangers Type 1 Patrol North of the Inuit Hamlet of Naujaat, Nunavut. (Credit Image: © Louie Palu for National Geographic), Louie Palu’s work was supported by funding from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, National Geographic Magazine and Pulitzer Center.
April 11, 2019, Kleinburg, ON – The McMichael Canadian Art Collection is pleased to announce that it will partner with the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival, the world’s largest photography event, for the sixth consecutive year. The McMichael will present the exhibition Louie Palu: Distant Early Warning, featuring the work of award-winning Canadian photographer Louie Palu (b. 1968, Toronto.) The exhibition opens May 18 and remains on view until September 2, 2019.
Louie Palu’s project documents the vestigial legacies of the Cold War and the increased military presence in the Arctic today. The changes in the region are exacerbated by the many unknowns the Arctic faces, among them the warming of the planet. Over several years — from 2015 to 2018 — what began as a Guggenheim Fellowship evolved into an assignment for National Geographic Magazine. Taken as a whole, the series of photographs examines the growing geopolitical tensions and changing life around Inuit communities in one of the planet’s most extreme and challenging places.
As a documentary photographer and filmmaker whose work has examined socio-political issues for nearly three decades, Palu is an experienced documentarian of numerous conflicts around the world, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, Mexico and Ukraine. His work has been displayed in collections around the world and has been featured in numerous prestigious publications.
“As an institution devoted solely to promoting the art of Canada, the McMichael has an obligation to exhibit artworks that spark conversation on important aspects of Canadian culture that are making headlines,” says McMichael Chief Curator Sarah Milroy. “Many of Louie Palu’s previous projects have tackled difficult subject matter, and the geopolitical situation in the Arctic is no different. We hope that visitors will come away with a greater understanding of the challenges facing this region and its people.”
Louie Palu’s work was supported by funding from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, National Geographic Magazine and Pulitzer Center. This exhibition is part of the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival and is sponsored by Blake Goldring and Canada Company: Many Ways to Serve.
About Louie Palu
Louie Palu is a documentary photographer and filmmaker whose work has examined socio-political issues such as human rights and war for 27 years. He is a Guggenheim Foundation Fellow and Harry Ransom Center Research Fellow. He has covered conflict in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Mexico and Ukraine. His work is held in numerous collections including the National Gallery of Art and Museum of Fine Arts Boston. His work has been published worldwide and has been featured on the BBC, and in Der Spiegel, El Pais, La Republica and The New York Times. His photographs and films have been exhibited in numerous museums and festivals including at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery and Munich Documentary Film Festival.
Media wishing to speak with exhibition curator Sarah Milroy, view the exhibition, or request high-resolution images of the artworks may contact Sam Cheung at firstname.lastname@example.org or 905.893.1121 ext. 2210.
Media Preview | May 21, 5:30 pm
Members of the media are invited to a media preview of the exhibition on the evening of May 21 at 5:30 pm. Artist Louie Palu and Chief Curator Sarah Milroy will be available for questions regarding the exhibition throughout the evening.
Light refreshments will be served. Media members attending the preview will receive complimentary parking and admission to the artist-led exhibition opening tour. For more information or to register, please contact Sam Cheung at email@example.com or 905.893.1121 ext. 2210.
Upcoming Exhibition Itee Pootoogook: Hymns to the Silence
Opening on June 1, the exhibition Itee Pootoogook: Hymns to the Silence will present an additional perspective on life in the Arctic, the McMichael’s geographic focus for the season. Curated by Nancy Campbell, the retrospective of over 80 drawings and ephemera by Itee Pootoogook (1951–2014) will be the largest exhibition of his work to date and forms part of an ongoing analysis of the careers of contemporary Inuit trailblazers. Hymns to the Silence will provide a personal, differing perspective on the issues that face contemporary Inuit communities.
Louie Palu: Distant Early Warning Exhibition Opening & Artist Tour
Tuesday, May 21, 7 pm
Louie Palu will lead a tour of his most recent photographic project in the Arctic. For the last three years, on assignment with National Geographic, Palu has investigated the vestigial legacies of the Cold War and current military activities in this extreme northern environment. For details and to register, please visit our website.
Arctic High: An Afternoon of Exhibitions and Talks
Sunday, June 16, 2 to 3 pm
This discussion panel is a unique opportunity to discover more about the exhibition Louie Palu: Distant Early Warning, a photography project documenting the geopolitical change resulting from the effects of global warming against the background of an austere and forbidding landscape. Moderated by McMichael Chief Curator Sarah Milroy, the panel will include artist Louie Palu, Tarrilik Duffy and Sadie Quarrier, Senior Photo Editor from National Geographic and photo editor on the project.
Itee Pootoogook: Hymns to the Silence Curatorial Presentation
Sunday, June 16, 3:30 to 4:30 pm
One of the key members of the third-generation of Inuit artists from Kinngait (Cape Dorset), Itee Pootoogook contributed to the transformation and reshaping of the creative traditions that were successfully pioneered in the second half of the 20th century by members of the West Baffin Eskimo Cooperative at Kinngait Studios. This presentation by exhibition curator Nancy Campbell will position his career in relation to other Inuit art innovators. Registration required. Coffee and refreshments will be served from 3 to 3:30 pm in the Founders’ Lounge.
About the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival
CONTACT fosters and celebrates the art and profession of photography with an annual Festival in May and year-round programming in the CONTACT Gallery.
CONTACT, a not-for-profit organization founded in 1997, is generously supported by Scotiabank, Scotia Wealth Management, Nikon Canada, Pattison Outdoor Advertising, Toronto Image Works, Transcontinental PLM, 3M Canada, BIG Digital, Waddington’s Auctioneers and Appraisers, Four By Eight Signs, Beyond Digital Imaging, Steam Whistle Brewing, Art Toronto, The Gladstone Hotel, The Globe and Mail, The Metropolitan Detroit, NOW Magazine, CBC Toronto, and Canadian Art.
CONTACT gratefully acknowledges the support of Celebrate Ontario, Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund, Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, Ontario Arts Council, The Government of Ontario, Partners in Art, Canada Council for the Arts, La Fondation Emmanuelle Gattuso, the Howard Webster Foundation, Hal Jackman Foundation, Mondrian Fund, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Goethe-Institut, Tourism Toronto and all of their funders, donors, and programming partners. For more information, please visit scotiabankcontactphoto.com and follow us on Twitter @ContactPhoto
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About the McMichael Canadian Art Collection
The McMichael Canadian Art Collection is an agency of the Government of Ontario and acknowledges the support of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, and the McMichael Canadian Art Foundation. It is the foremost venue in the country showcasing the Group of Seven and their contemporaries. In addition to touring exhibitions, its permanent collection consists of over 6,500 artworks by Canadian artists, including paintings by the Group of Seven and their contemporaries, as well as First Nations, Métis and Inuit artists. The gallery is located on 100 acres of northern landscape and hiking trails at 10365 Islington Avenue, Kleinburg, north of Major Mackenzie Drive in the City of Vaughan. For more information, please visit mcmichael.com.
*THE ART OF CANADA is an official mark of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection.
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