Ghosts of Monsters

Here is a link to an article written by Sara Cunningham of Azure

Opening Reception: Thursday, May 10, 6 – 8 pm, 2018
Media Preview: Wednesday, May 9, 1 – 2 pm, 2018
Exhibition Dates: May 9 – 27, 2018
Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Friday, 1 – 6 pm
Saturday May 26 and Sunday May 27, 10 am – 5 pm
Lower Gallery at Toronto Centre for the Arts
5040 Yonge Street, North York (at North York Centre Subway Station)

Ghosts of Monsters is a photographic installation of neighbourhood architecture, a representation of evolving tastes and an expression of shifting cultural capital. This three-year-long project observes how communities express themselves in outer urban contexts. It is grounded in two photo series, Ghosts of Monsters and ParkHome.

Paola Poletto set out to photograph postwar homes for sale in a one kilometre square section of north Toronto known as Willowdale with the intention of returning to re-photograph the various sites after they were sold. Her goal was to combine the images of the older homes before their demolition (a.k.a. the “Ghost”) with the newer and much larger multi-level Neo-Eclectic replacement house (a.k.a. the “Monster”) that would inevitably assert their position on the various sites explored. This resulted in a series of composite images overlaying the two types of homes on top of one another.

For the ParkHome series, a street composition of 55 homes along Park Home Avenue combines the diverse front fa├žades as viewed from the street with a backyard view of their collective landscape taken from the perspective of the adjoining cemetery. The conceptual narrative begins and ends with a military tank pointed toward City Hall, Queens Park, Lake Ontario, Tarontha, Taronto, Toranto, Torento, Toronto, Toronton,  Tkaronto – "where there are trees standing in the water."

Paola Poletto’s work shifts between DIY and institutional-based practice. Comfortable in both artistic and creative paradigms, she is consistently fascinated with representations of collaborative productions where visual constructions are transformed into rigorous narratives that express multiple points of view. Paola’s independent practice includes photography, bookmaking, installations and project management. She is the independent curator of several art/lit projects which include: Kiss Machine (2000-5), Inflatable Museum (2001), Girls and Guns (2004), Boredom Fighters! (2008), Tel-talk: art interventions in telephone booths (2012) and Oh Dear: public art (2013).

Ghosts of Monsters is produced by Paola Poletto with Flavio Trevisan, Brendan George Ko and Paul Hong. Writer Paul Hong contributes a speculative fiction set amongst the urban-scapes explored, photo-based artist Brendan George Ko worked with Paola to create the photo collages, and artist and founder of Hex Editions, Flavio Trevisan, collaborated on the design and production of the bookwork, PARKHOME, for OOL imprint.

Co-presented by North York Arts, as part of Scotiabank Contact Photography Festival. This exhibition is supported by the Ontario Arts Council and Toronto Centre for the Arts.