Fixations: Thoughts on Time

Durga Rajah & Tommy Calderon

Untitled (Body), Tommy Calderon, 2020

Fixations: Thoughts on Time // Durga Rajah & Tommy Calderon

Curated by Kelsey Myler & Christina Oyawale and presented as a part of Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival’s core exhibitions

Exhibition Run: April 6 – May 28, 2022
Gallery Hours: Wed – Sat, 1 – 6pm
Opening Reception: Thursday, May 5th at 6pm
Performance by Durga Rajah: Thursday, April 21st at 2:30pm

Fixations: Thoughts on Time is an exhibition featuring emerging photographers Tommy Calderon and Durga Rajah. Both artists explore the time required to construct and keep an image, both physically, psychologically, and culturally.

A Measure of Time: 3 Seconds, i, Durga Rajah, 2020

A Measure of Time: 3 Seconds, Durga Rajah

In A Measure of Time: 3 Seconds Durga represents time objectively, in terms of photographic procedure; and subjectively, as a lived experience. With her own body as the subject, she uses continuous lighting to capture 3 seconds of movement in each photographic negative. Then, she follows the standard darkroom process for developing the positive print right up until the final fix bath, before which, each print is exposed to daylight for increasing measures of time: 1 second, 1 minute, 1 hour, 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 1 year, 1 decade, and infinity.

The in-camera exposure is the primary measure of time in the photographic process, while the duration for which the paper is exposed to daylight is a secondary measure that encapsulates the essence of time within the photographic object, the print itself. The procedural and factual orientation of this work is supplemented by a more metaphoric aspect; the way in which the artist situates herself within the representation. In each photograph, she performs a movement that expresses a contemplative sense of being within the 3 second measure. The prints remain in process for their respective durations until fixed. With the ninth print unfixed, the work’s gesture endures as far as time itself.

Join us on Thursday, April 21st at 2:30pm for a performance where Durga will take down and fix a print in the exhibition.

Untitled (Visage), Tommy Calderon. 2020

Dialectics, Tommy Calderon

Dialectics (2019-2022) is a series of works that speak on the nature of the contemporary moment and the effects it has on the human condition. Imbued with qualities of early photographic imaging and ideas of western philosophical traditions, we are asked to consider our inclinations as a point of connection and departure from one another. Building upon this concept, Calderón’s images navigate the discordant relation between representation and reality so we may consider alternative considerations for human autonomy and understanding while acknowledging fundamental aspects of human and natural life.

Through the use of gelatin silver prints, the variation of image sizes, and the arrangement of subject matter; Calderón investigates the image-making process as a site of dissonance between imagination and reality; fiction and nonfiction; the way we interpret our relation to others. Created using a dated photographic process, Dialectics speaks of an increasingly complex society we must contend with while making use of outdated and possibly superseded notions of human knowledge and understanding to reconcile aspects of individual identity with the reality of our current era.

Artspace Gallery is located 401 Richmond St. W LL106 Toronto, ON M5V 3A8

For more information please visit our website.

A Measure of Time: 3 Seconds, vii, Durga Rajah, 2020

Social Media:
Tommy Calderon: @tortillahug
Durga Rajah: @durgarajj
Gallery: @xuniversity_artspace
CONTACT Festival: @contactphoto