During a time of rapid change, when documentary-style photography and experimental filmmaking remained firmly on the periphery of the art world, an exceptional group of artists used lens-based media to capture images of American life in all its startling complexity and diversity. These glimpses into communities and individuals outside of the mainstream not only challenged conventional views of society, but allowed us to see ourselves more clearly.
This spring the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) invites visitors to experience this new vision of post-war America through the works of photographers Diane Arbus, Nan Goldin, Danny Lyon, Gordon Parks, Garry Winogrand and those who attended Casa Susanna, and filmmakers Kenneth Anger, Shirley Clarke, Marie Menken, Robert Frank and Alfred Leslie. Featuring over 200 photographs and four films, the visions presented in Outsiders: American Photography and Film, 1950s–1980s remind us that the world is not united by a smooth surface, but rather by a complex network of ideas and images, often in tension with each other.
Opening to the public on Saturday, March 12, and view through May 29, 2016 this special exhibition is co-curated by the AGO’s own Associate Curator of Photography Sophie Hackett and the AGO’s Manager of Publications, Jim Shedden.
Outsiders: American Photography and Film, 1950s–1980s is part of the AGO Year of Photography, and a key moment arrives in May as the Gallery becomes one of the official hubs for the 2016 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.