Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival is an annual event in May with well over 1500 Canadian and international artists and photographers exhibiting at more than 175 venues throughout the Greater Toronto Area. Founded as a not-for-profit organization in 1997, the Festival is now a charitable organization and presents a diverse range of programs throughout the community.

As a leading proponent of photography, the Festival increases exposure and recognition for local, Canadian and international artists and is committed to advancing knowledge, creativity and innovation in photography. It stimulates excitement and discussion among a diverse audience that has grown to over 1.8 million. CONTACT is the largest photography event in the world, and a premiere cultural event in Canada.

CONTACT is devoted to celebrating and fostering the art and profession of photography. This is at the core of everything we do. The rich mosaic of photographic imagery throughout Toronto during the month of May–from museum walls to city streets–has the power to expand our horizons, deepen our insights and tell us about who we are. We believe a strong and vital culture is part of a truly healthy community. Our sincere gratitude goes out to all the artists and photographers, sponsors, funders and partners who are vital to the growth and ongoing success of the Festival.


Inspired by discourse within the community and observation of practices throughout the field worldwide, CONTACT’s curated programming includes Primary Exhibitions and Public Installations. Exploring subjects relevant to our times, we collaborate with galleries, museums, public and private institutions and agencies to create a vital focus on photography in Toronto throughout the month of May.

CONTACT's Primary Exhibitions at major venues in Toronto showcase the work of Canadian and international artists, both emerging and established. A focus on contemporary works is completed by images from throughout the history of photography.   

Our Public Installations of photography are presented in high profile public sites across the city that are accessible to a wide and diverse audience from all walks of life. Projects on billboards in Toronto extend to eight cities across Canada.

Reflecting a wide range of approaches to photography, approximately 30 Featured Exhibitions of works by artists from around the world at established galleries and cultural centres are selected through a call for submissions. 

The foundation of CONTACT was based on an open call to participate, enabling emerging artists to show their work concurrent with exhibitions of works by leading professionals. Today the Open Exhibitions continue to encourage community involvement across the city at galleries, community centres, educational and international institutions restaurants, cafes, retail stores, and many alternative locations.

CONTACT organizes and co-presents numerous Public Programs and events such as lectures, symposiums, film screenings, portfolio reviews and workshops. Catering to all levels of interest in photography, these initiatives stimulate discourse within the community and encourage participation.

Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival

CONTACT is an open forum for the promotion and discussion of photography. CONTACT is not responsible for the specific content or subject matter of any work displayed or advertised. Some exhibitions or materials may be offensive, upsetting or disturbing to some members of the public.

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