This Saturday I spent about 3–4 hours going to different exhibitions that make up Mois De La Photo (Photo Month) in Montreal. I’m not fond of writing about things I don’t like, I MUCH prefer to select a few things that I do like and write about those.
I was disappointed in the work that I saw overall. I saw about 8–10 exhibitions and I won’t name them. It wasn’t because the work was bad or anything, it just was not my cup of tea. Almost everything I saw was dark-themed, abstract, overly-intellectualized, and WAY too experimental imo. I have nothing against experimental, but imagine if 99% of everything you heard at the Montreal Jazz fest was experimental.…it would suck for most people. People expect festivals that they go to, to somewhat represent their idea of what the festival is about. Of the 8 Exhibitions, 3 of them had videos…Video is not photography. I DO have an open mind BTW; I guess I just would have liked even a teeny representation of the work that I saw to be similar to the fine art photography that I like to see.
So at the end of the day, I guess my issue is with the Title, “Mois de la photo”. Such a conventional title, it makes you think you will be seeing ‘some’ conventional photography. You will not (as far as I can tell from my sample). I’d much rather they title the thing Experimental photo Month.
Of the 8 exhibitions I saw, the only one I liked a bit was The Dead by Jack Burman. Large prints of dead people preserved in formaldehyde. Not trying to be facetious here, but Burman’s exhibition was one of the most concrete, and “accessible” ones. You know full well what you are looking at.
- Image from ‘The Dead’ by Jack Burman