2014 – 2015 Show Submissions NOW OPEN!

The time is now! For the upcoming exhibition year (Sept 2014-August 2015), we intend to consider all submissions for both solo and group shows and are open to curatorial proposals, artist-made books and works that could activate a street-front window space (projects, screen-based projects, vinyl…etc). Click here for more details!

‘I’m Not There’ by Saman Aghvami

Curated by: Samantha Wehbi
April 30th – May 24th, 2014
Opening Reception: Saturday, May 3rd, 2PM – 5PM

I’m Not There is a photographic project that explores the presence of nostalgic places, as memory and images, in the lives of those among the Iranian diaspora in Toronto who are unable to return to their homeland. The subjects of this photographic project are Iranians who have left their homeland for different reasons and at different times. Among the subjects are political dissidents, artists, gays, lesbians and religious minorities who were forced to flee because of persecution and, in some cases, threat of execution. This project will touch upon concepts and themes of exile and nostalgia for a home that is longed for but out of reach. As an Iranian living in Canada, Aghvami was compelled to delve into this topic, which spoke to him on a personal level. Moreover, his interest in Iran’s current politics was a strong motivation for him to think more deeply about the notion of exile and to commence this project.

I’m Not There is a series of environmental portraits of exiled Iranians in their Canadian homes, with an image projected onto them of a place in Iran that evokes nostalgia. The photographs aim to address the interconnection between two types of home: the physical one in which they currently live and the one that lives within them as memory. A handwritten text by each subject will accompany all the photographs. These images reflect Aghvami’s effort to depict intangible notions such as nostalgia and homesickness while indirectly making a political statement about the oppression that initiated these emotions.

I’m Not There is a Featured Exhibition for the Contact Photography Festival

Saman Aghvami has been a professional photographer since 2003, when he started working as a staff photographer for a prominent news agency (ISNA) in Iran, his country of birth. Before moving to Canada in 2011, Aghvami—who holds a BA in Photography—had covered social, political and sports events inside and outside of Iran. His work has appeared in numerous national Iranian newspapers, as well as in many international publications such as Associated Press, Reuters, The New York Times and The Washington Post. His recent projects focus on notions of separation, exile and nostalgia.


Defenders Promo Video

Come see Dan Epstein’s solo show Defenders, curated by Monika Berenyi, at the IMA Gallery during the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

May 1 – May 25, 2013
Opening Reception: Thursday, May 9, 2013 6pm-9pm

Full Frame Winner for “Best in Show”: Julia Callon

Julia Callon, The Creative Process No. 2, 2011, Giclée print.

I·M·A Gallery would like to thank everyone who came out and gave support for the Full Frame Holiday Show and Sale. Full Frame is an annual fundraising initiative to support I·M·A Gallery, a non-profit student-run gallery. Thanks to the success of this event and your continuing support, the gallery continues to provide an exhibition venue for contemporary Canadian and international film, new media and photography.

Many talented emerging artists from Ryerson’s School of Image Arts contributed work to Full Frame, but only one could be chosen as “Best in Show.” We were very honoured to have Maia-Mari Sutnik, Curator of Photography at the Art Gallery of Ontario, as our distinguished judge this year.  She has contributed to many publications, including international editions of Contemporary Photographers and Contemporary Masterpieces, and more recently “Deuil: New Work by Spring Hurlbut,” for Prefix Institute of Contemporary Art. Major exhibitions curated include, Responding to PhotographyGutmann,  Michel Lambeth: Photographer,  Pop Photographica: Photography’s Objects in Everyday Life, and Eisenstaedt: Two Visions, produced in conjunction with the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston) exhibition Ansel Adams. She is currently working on an exhibition of the legendary Czech photographer, Josef Sudek.

Of the judging process Sutnik wrote: “There were many promising artists, and it was not easy  to arrive at only one prize winner.” We are pleased to announced that the winner of “Best in Show” for Full Frame 2011 is Julia Callon for her image The Creative Process No. 2, from the series The Creative Process. Sutnik was particularly impressed with her working methodology and her “imaginative theatricality” for this series. Sutnik states: Her methods are unassuming , yet she brings a quirky ingenuity to creating relationships that are open-ended to the creative potential in her uses of technology bridged  to her expressive purpose. Further stating that her “emerging artistic practice shows promise” Sutnik has awarded her the grand prize for this event: Julia will be given a solo show at I·M·A Gallery next season. We look forward to featuring more of her work here at I·M·A Gallery.

Honorable Mentions for Full Frame also go out to Lindsey King and Ben Lariviere. Congratulations and many thanks to all participants who helped to put on an amazing show. I·M·A Gallery would also like to thank all its sponsors: Adina Photo and Custom Frames, Art Metropole, Downtown Camera, Elpro, Gallery TPW, Gallery 44, Henry’s, Lowepro, PFACS – Ryerson University, School of Image Arts, Pikto, Prefix Photo Magazine, The Drake Hotel, Scaramouche, and Toronto Image Works.