DF Grad Students create immersive installation, “The Living Room,” for ROM Family Camera

Barbara with her kids Naina and Arjun, and grandma (daddi) Indira, who is visiting from India. Anil Dewan, Niagara Falls. Ontari
Wednesday, May 3, 2017 - 1:00pm

Source: Royal Ontario Museum New Release,  Friday, April 28, 2017 from: https://www.rom.on.ca/en/about-us/newsroom/press-releases/rom-presents-t...

TORONTO, April 28, 2017 – The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is pleased to announce the opening of The Family Camera, an original ROM exhibition that explores how family photographs reflect and shape our experiences of migration and our sense of identity. On display from Saturday, May 6, to Monday, October 29, 2017, in the Museum’s Roloff Beny Gallery, the exhibition is part of the ROM’s Canada 150 year-long celebration. The Family Camera is one of the primary exhibitions of the 2017 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

“The Family Camera exhibition uses a visual lens to bring personal, everyday stories of the Canadian experience into focus, making this exhibition a fitting way to celebrate our 150th year,” says Josh Basseches, ROM Director & CEO. “This exhibition highlights the ROM’s vital role as a place of discovery and new research, where the public is engaged as active participants in the museum experience.”

The exhibition examines the enduring connection between migration and family photography. In Canada, migration is central to family history, whether recent or in the past and whether over short or long distances. From departures and arrivals to everyday moments and milestones, family photographs depict our journeys and our deep-rooted need for connection. The exhibition considers the political, social and technological factors that reconfigure families, including dislocation, marriage equality, and social media. The Family Camera also explores how these factors transform the photographs we capture and how we share them.
Almost every photograph in this evocative exhibition comes from a Canadian home. As a result, it demonstrates the familiar and unexpected ways that family photographs define our sense of self, family, community, and nation.

“The Family Camera encourages visitors to think differently about family photographs. Rather than just reflecting or illustrating the past, family photographs are active agents that continue to shape our memories and experiences and define a sense of family. The exhibition examines family photographs as a cultural practice,” says Dr. Deepali Dewan, the Dan Mishra Curator of South Asian Art & Culture, ROM.

The Family Camera is a partnership with the Art Gallery of Mississauga (AGM), with works on display at both venues. Over two hundred objects are featured in the exhibition, including photographs, vintage cameras and ephemera. These objects have been collected through a public archive project launched in 2016 by The Family Camera Network. This multi-year research project includes six partner institutions supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). Canadians can participate in the ongoing project until the end of the year and contribute to the exhibition through digital and social media. The Family Camera also includes work by contemporary artists Deanna Bowen and Jeff Thomas on display at the ROM, and Dinh Q. Lê (at the AGM).  An immersive installation, “The Living Room,” created by graduate students at OCAD University, uses projection-mapping technology to explore the power of storytelling through the sharing of family photographs.

“The ROM is renowned for its ability to showcase important works throughout our history in new and innovative ways, and The Family Camera is another great example of this,” says Eleanor McMahon, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport. “The use of family photographs from diverse communities highlights the cultural fabric of our province and our diversity, which is something to celebrate in our 150th year. I’m delighted that the Ontario150 program is supporting this unique exhibition that will help ensure our artistic and cultural legacies are treasured by future generations.”

Exhibition Details

The Family Camera is divided into several sections. Cameras for the Family features a timeline of cameras made for the amateur photographer. The timeline includes early box cameras preloaded with film and costing only one dollar, as well as digital cameras and cellphones that have made taking and sharing digital photographs increasingly easy. State of Family considers the ways state policy determines which photos can be taken, who gets recognized as a family, and therefore what a family photograph looks like.
For example, the 1923 Chinese Exclusion Act barred the families of Chinese men who had come as labourers from joining them in Canada, and until 1996, Indian residential schools split up Indigenous families. Snapshots Don’t Grow Up presents conventional ways of photographing children, such as birthdays or Christmas, that camera advertisements encouraged, showing parents how to compose “Kodak moments”. These three sections provide context for the largest grouping, On the Move, which explores family photographs in a world of increasing mobility. The images in this section capture people before, during, or after a move. They also show how photographs travel across distances, through the mail or social media, as a way to strengthen familial bonds. This section includes a wall of photographs taken at Niagara Falls over the last hundred years, showing how even tourist images bring together different forms of mobility and help families assert a sense of national belonging.

The Art Gallery of Mississauga features a unique section of the exhibition that runs from May 4 to August 27, 2017.   Missing Chapters examines family photographs that are lost, abandoned, don’t survive, or don’t exist. The work “Lost Photographs” invites visitors to contribute stories of “missing chapters” in their own family archives.

The exhibition has been curated by Deepali Dewan (lead), Jennifer Orpana, Thy Phu, Julie Crooks, and Sarah Bassnett, with the assistance of Sarah Parsons and Silvia Forni.

Visit here for full exhibition details.
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Media Contact
Wendy Vincent, Bilingual Publicist
416.586.5547, wendyv@rom.on.ca 

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Thursday, November 20, 2008 - 5:00am to Saturday, January 17, 2009 - 5:00am

New video projections by Professor Richard Fung, a Toronto-based video artist and cultural critic, interplay recent footage from Ontario sites with 19th century paintings and engravings by J.M.W. Turner. An exhibition catalogue with essay by Monika Kin Gagnon will be available. The McMaster Museum of Art acknowledges the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts - Media Arts Commissioning Program for this project.

The Landscapes exhibition will be complemented by an exhibition of selections from the permanent collection y J.M.W. TURNER.

Venue & Address: 
McMaster Museum of Art Alvin A. Lee Building, University Ave.1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario

Art and Interactive Projections: Tentacles

This research employs interactive public video projection to explore emerging social constructions involving play and ad hoc communities. In these installations the viewer is encouraged to participate in unstructured play. As with every interactive experience (and in fact, most other things in life) there is the initial satisfaction resulting from simply figuring out how one’s decisions, gestures and actions cause reactions and create effects in the surrounding environment.

The interplay of scale – the small screen in the palm of one’s hand contrasted with the large public screen on the facade of a building – parallels other central human experiences. The intimacy of touch, for example, is contrasted by the dominance of projected, broadcast visual stimuli, while the screen – the sign – forms a kind of text waiting to be read. Your personal space simultaneously shrinks and expands as the tiny gestures you make with your fingers are magnified for all to see. Public and private stand in stark contrast, highlighting dichotomies like wireless and wired, perception and cognition, knowing and being.

Operating from within the crowd, viewers or players had the opportunity to step onto the stage of the projected environment – to display themselves in action, engaged with other virtual beings. Movements, gestures and displays become part of this spontaneous public performance, suggestive of the activity on a dance floor, where typical rules about decorum, reservation, engagement with strangers and physical contact are suspended. Each private, gestural experience is amplified publicly as a by-product of being within a crowd. Taking action in public in this way constitutes one layer in the creation of community. Our behaviours and others’ meld to generate simultaneous effects, creating a joint awareness that forms the cornerstone of our collectivity.

Play is presented as a free-form, creative activity – a childlike enthrallment with exploration, skill-learning and sharing. The scale and location of the displays encourages parallel play and the growing awareness of the activities of other players nearby. The public nature of the experience creates the opportunity for ambient performance, where other players’ awareness of you subtly influences and rewards your behaviour. Finally, these factors combine with the ambiguous structures and activities built into each project to encourage social play and collaboration in an emerging, shared activity.


Talk to MeMuseum of Modern ArtNew York City, USA, July – November 2011
Transmission, GLOBAL SUMMIT 2011Victoria, Canada, February 2011
MediaCity 2010, Bauhaus UniversityWeimar, Germany, October 2010
Festival du nouveau cinemaMontreal, Canada, October 2010
Mobilefest, Museum of Image and SoundSao Paulo, Brazil, September 2010
Nuit Blanche, Lennox Contemporary GalleryToronto, Canada, October 2009

Geoffrey Shea and Michael Longford. Large Screens and Small Screens: Public and Private Engagement with Urban Projections. Media City: Interaction of Architecture, Media and Social Phenomena. J. Geelhaar, F. Eckardt, B. Rudolf, S. Zierold, M. Markert (Eds.) Bauhaus-Universität, Weimar, Germany, 201-210, 2010
Geoffrey Shea, Michael Longford, Elaine Biddiss. Art and Play in Interactive Projections: Three Perspectives. ISEA, Istanbul, 2011
Geoffrey Shea and Michael Longford. Identity Play in an Artistic, Interactive Urban Projection. CHI Workshop: Large Displays in Urban Life, Vancouver, 2011

M. Longford, Connecting Talent in Digital Media, MITACS and the NCE GRAND, Mississauga, Canada, September 2010
M. Longford, “Digital Media: Successes and Accomplishments in Canadian Digital Media Research,” Canada 3.0, Stratford, Canada, May 2010
R. King, International Centre for Art and New Technologies (CIANT), Prague, Czech Republic, March 2010
G. Shea, Mobile Experience Innovation Centre (MEIC), Ontario College of Art and Design University, Toronto, Canada, February 2010
G. Shea, M. Longford, R. King, Discovery 2010, Ontario Centres of Excellence, Toronto, Canada, May 2010
R. King, Music in a Global Village Conference, Budapest, Hungary, December 2009
M. Longford, G. Shea, iPhone Developer's Group, Augmented Reality Lab, York University, Toronto, Canada, November 2009
M. Longford, Project Demonstration - A New Media Gathering, Town of Markham, Markham, Canada – October 2009
M. Longford, “Tentacles: Design, Technology and Interdisciplinary Collaboration in the Mobile Media Lab” PEKING/YORK SYMPOSIUM: Interdisciplinarity, Art and Technology, York University, Toronto, Canada, October 2009
G. Shea, “Artifact or Experience: Presenting Network Mediated Objects,” Interacting with Immersive Worlds, Brock University, St. Catharines, Canada, June 2009

Image of people looking abstract images projected on a wall
Wednesday, February 15, 2012 - 4:30pm
Lab Member: 
Rob King
Micheal Langford
Geoffrey Shea
Ken Leung
David Green

Free John and Tarek

Free John and Tarek
Saturday, October 5, 2013 - 10:30pm to Sunday, October 6, 2013 - 11:00am

In conjunction with Scotiabank Nuit Blanche

An installation with projected images of John Greyson and Tarek Loubani superimposed on work by OCAD U Associate Professor, Wendy Coburn.

Coordinated by Associate Professors, Paula Gardner and Wendy Coburn.




Venue & Address: 
OCAD University 51 McCaul St. Toronto, Ontario