Montreal’s Momenta focuses on fact and illusion in photography

By Robert Everett-Green
Courtesy of The Globe and Mail

Photography in its projected form is a prime public art in Montreal, and often a monumental one. It is less clear how devoted the city is to photography as an interior gallery art.

LaToya Ruby Frazier’s Mom Making an Image of Me, from The Notion of Family series, 2008. COURTESY OF MICHEL REIN AND GAVIN BROWN’S ENTERPRISE

“While photographs may not lie, liars may photograph.” Lewis Hine’s comment from the depth of the film era seems quaint in the age of Photoshop, when photos can indeed be made to tell polished untruths. Hine’s larger point, amplified later by Richard Avedon, was that the photographer’s choice of what to show is not so much the truth as an opinion, or an attempt at persuasion.

Photography’s relationship with the real is the overall theme of Montreal’s Momenta: Biennale de l’Image, the latest edition of what used to be called Le Mois de la Photo. This expansive yet relatively compact festival features 38 artists from 17 countries in 20 venues, anchored at Galerie de l’UQAM and VOX, Centre de l’image contemporaine.

Read more…