Coming soon: the Ryerson Image Centre

It’s almost here! The Ryerson Image Centre (RIC), the latest addition to Canada’s gallery landscape and Toronto’s newest cultural destination, opens its doors this Saturday, Sept. 29. The grand opening marks the establishment of an innovative arts centre dedicated to collecting, research and public exhibition of photography and related arts, including new media, installation art and film. The Ryerson Image Centre is located in the heart of downtown Toronto and at the core of Ryerson University’s urban campus.

The public opening of the Ryerson Image Centre takes place on the night of Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, with the gallery open from 7 p.m. Saturday Sept. 29 to 7 a.m. Sunday Sept. 30. During Toronto’s biggest annual one-night celebration of visual art, the public is invited to the RIC’s grand opening exhibitions and to program the building’s exterior LED lighting system, transforming the building itself into a work of art with a possible 16.7 million different colour combinations that anyone can change from their smart phone.

The Ryerson Image Centre’s two inaugural exhibitions, Archival Dialogues: Reading the Black Star Collection and The Art of the Archive, showcase groundbreaking work by some of Canada’s foremost professional contemporary artists alongside emerging artists associated with Ryerson University’s School of Image Arts.

“Our grand opening brings together four exciting and extraordinary experiences,” says Doina Popescu, director of the Ryerson Image Centre, “never before seen commissioned work by some of the most important Canadian artists of our time; recent work by talented emerging artists from Ryerson University; an engaging view into the Black Star Collection of culturally and historically significant photojournalistic prints that tell the history of the 20th century; and the inauguration of our spectacular new building designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects.”

“We’re proud and excited to welcome the public to this one-of-a-kind facility and these two exhibitions,” says Sheldon Levy, president of Ryerson University. “The grand opening is the first opportunity to share what is one of the top facilities in the world for photography and related arts.”

Archival Dialogues: Reading the Black Star Collection, features a who’s who of contemporary Canadian visual artists, including Stephen Andrews, Christina Battle,MarieHélène Cousineau, Stan Douglas, Vera Frenkel, Vid Ingelevics, David Rokeby and Michael Snow. Each artist has created new, multidisciplinary work inspired by Ryerson University’s prestigious Black Star Collection, a legendary photojournalism archive of more than 292,000 black and white photographs that trace the social and political history of the 20th Century. Doina Popescu, director of the of the RIC says, “The Black Star photographs, which reveal so much about our past, are recontextualized and brought to life in revelatory ways through the contemporary readings and interpretations that the artists have brought to their projects. It has been an honour to work with the eight selected artists and with my co-curator Peggy Gale, one of Canada’s finest critical thinkers and curators.”

In The Art of the Archive, Ryerson University School of Image Arts students and recent alumni investigate time, memory and history through photographic and video images. The exhibition, curated by Gaëlle Morel, Exhibitions Curator at the RIC, includes works by Alyssa Bistonath, Kyle Brohman, Julia Callon, Jenna Edwards, Tara Ernst, Daniel Froidevaux, Elisa Gilmour, Ben Lenzner, Marc Losier, Eugen Sakhnenko, Kate Tarini, and Andrew Williamson.

The opening of the RIC heralds the beginning of an expanded arts dialogue in Toronto and across the country. The Ryerson Image Centre offers a complementary voice in the public discourse around the historical and contemporary photographic arts and related fields. With free admission for everyone, the RIC is pleased to welcome people from every walk of life.



Ryerson Image Centre Grand Opening

Saturday, September 29, 2012 7 p.m. to Sunday, September 30, 2012 7 a.m.

Part of Scotiabank Nuit Blanche


Archival Dialogues: Reading the Black Star Collection

New works by Stephen Andrews, Christina Battle, Marie-Hélène Cousineau,

Stan Douglas, Vera Frenkel, Vid Ingelevics, David Rokeby and Michael Snow

inspired by the Black Star Collection at Ryerson University.

Specially commissioned for the grand opening of the Ryerson Image Centre.

Curated by Doina Popescu and Peggy Gale.

September 29 – December 16, 2012


The Art of the Archive

Ryerson University students and recent alumni investigate time, memory

and history through photographic and video images.

Works by Alyssa Bistonath, Kyle Brohman, Julia Callon, Jenna Edwards,

Tara Ernst, Daniel Froidevaux, Elisa Gilmour, Ben Lenzner, Marc Losier,

Eugen Sakhnenko, Kate Tarini, and Andrew Williamson.

Curated by Gaëlle Morel.

September 29 – December 16, 2012



Admission is free.


Ryerson Image Centre:

33 Gould Street (one block northeast of Yonge and Dundas)

Toronto, Ontario, Canada



The Ryerson Image Centre (RIC)Toronto’s newest cultural destination, is a centre of excellence for the public exhibition, research, study and teaching of photography and related disciplines, including new media, installation art and film. International in scope, the Ryerson Image Centre features three interrelated areas of activity: an exciting program of public exhibitions where innovative work by professional Canadian and international artists addresses social, cultural, historical and aesthetic issues; a world-class research centre that conducts research into the history of photography and documentary media, and offers an array of workshops, conferences and publication programs; and the collection, which is home to the famous Black Star Collection of black and white photojournalistic prints, as well as important fine art photographic holdings and artist archives. The new museum-standard facility consists of approximately 4,500 square feet of exhibition space; a Great Hall for lectures, conferences, screenings and receptions; a glassed-in entrance colonnade with the Salah J. Bachir New Media Wall, a 16-foot new media wall visible from the street; a temperature and humidity controlled vault for our growing collection; and a state of the art, profess
ionally staffed research centre.
 The public can find more details, and subscribe to the Ryerson Image Centre email newsletter, at


Ryerson University is Canada’s leader in innovative, career-oriented education and a university clearly on the move. With a mission to serve societal need, and a long-standing commitment to engaging its community, Ryerson offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate programs. Distinctly urban, culturally diverse and inclusive, the university is home to more than 28,000 students, including 2,300 master’s and PhD students, nearly 2,700 faculty and staff, and more than 140,000 alumni worldwide. Research at Ryerson is on a trajectory of success and growth: externally funded research has doubled in the past four years. The G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education is Canada’s leading provider of university-based adult education. For more information, visit