SHIFTER’s Sheldon Barrocks walks us through Media Pass, an immersive visual art experience in Toronto. Read on to learn more.
When two artforms like music and creative photography come together, it usually creates a unique and memorable experience.That’s exactly what took place at Media Pass in the 6ix in November.
Media Pass is an in-person and virtual art exhibition that captures some of Toronto’s favourite concerts and festivals. Located at Toronto’s Manifesto office hub, the event was curated by Imani Dominique, the visionary behind several other past art exhibit events in the city. The photography-based exhibit combined the talents of 9 Toronto-based concert photographers: Alicia Reid, Anushay Sheikh, Connor Tadao (Flee Normality), Evie Maynes, Jet Bailey, Taija Grey (Jesusssister), Jershotyou, Kianna Sumitani, and woes.jpg.
Through vivid photography and a community video installation edited by Grace Munene, Media Pass explored concert photography as an archival and community-based method for preserving cultural history. By bringing together a variety of emerging and mid-career artists, Media Pass aspired to create a community-filled, electric space celebrating the intersections of music and visual art.
According to Dominique, what started off as a simple idea quickly came together within a matter of months. “[I’ve always been] very entrepreneurial and I consider myself an artist as well. I would go to pop up shows in the city when I was in high school. I really like [art] but I also like the business side as well. [I asked myself] ‘What can I do that can bring them both together?’ The idea for the show [initiated] back in May. I really love concerts, and I think that music photography is so beautiful in general. I wanted to do something that merges the two, especially since the arts community is so intertwined with concerts. It’s like a beautiful marriage.”
While putting the plans of the show together, Dominique was not shy about being very intentional about every aspect of the show, right down to the small details. “I knew going into the curation that I wanted to choose a diverse set of artists. A lot of artists in the arts industry like women aren’t represented. People of color aren’t represented. So I knew that I absolutely wanted to make sure that [they had access to] the platforms and opportunities. I also knew I wanted to choose photographers who are dedicated music photographers. A lot of people do photography, but all the photographers in the show are music photographers. Not exclusively, but that’s their main [creative focus].”
Beyond the selected photographers, Dominique saw an opportunity for the individuals of the arts community to be a part of the exhibit. So she developed another creative aspect for the show.
“The community installation was [added] to bring together the idea of how the audience interacts with the concert spaces. We asked community members to submit footage of their favorite concerts, [and] also [added] videos of the photographers talking about their practice. All that together shows [how] everything is intertwined-the producers, the photographers, the audience-like everything coming together [as] one.”
If you missed the chance to attend Media Pass, you’re in luck! You can find an amazing virtual walkthrough for the exhibit here. For more information about Imani Dominique and her work visit imanidominique.com.
Photo credit: Nkwachukwu Nwalozie @ZUMON @ZUMONSTUDIOS