The Boreal Collective features a generation of young photojournalists who document social inequities through carefully composed narratives. After years of photographing international locations, this exhibition focuses on their recent projects set in Canada. The show includes five widely published photojournalists, who investigate geographic shifts in landscape within Canada, be it physically or psychologically.
Both Ian Willms and Aaron Vincent Elkaim study man-made effects on the environment through the excavations that occur to exploit natural resources. Willms surveys the Albertan tar sands and the illnesses that are allegedly symptomatic of the extraction of oil, whereas Elkaim’s images of Sarnia, Ontario, record the encroachment of the petrochemical industry on the landscape.
For the other artists, this geographic shift connects to the complexities around establishing a new home. Brett Gundlock’s diptychs of families who recently immigrated to Toronto underscore the physical and cultural transitions involved in relocation. Jonathan Taggart’s project highlights the residual effects that foster care has on a First Nations family. Rafal Gerzsak’s series closely examines the notoriety of location. His photographs are taken in British Columbia, on an infamous stretch of road where dozens of women have gone missing. This exhibition brings together a group of photojournalists who guide the viewer through distinctly Canadian environments.