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Peter MacCallum

Peter MacCallum

In this his newest book, Peter MacCallum has assembled collections of his documentary photographs of the last decade that examine the particularities of the vernacular spaces of human labour, commerce, and habitation.

Conceived as series, these documentary photographs juxtapose the miscellany of the commercial architecture of Toronto's Yonge Street with the uniform elegance of rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis in Paris; an aging zinc foundry in Montreal with a venerable independent garage in Toronto; the functional Theatre Passe Muraille in Toronto with the tiny, lushly decorated Théâtre du Tambour Royal in Paris.

Shifting from the industrial to the moumental to the domestic, MacCallum's roving eye lands upon the gritty morphology of the coal-fired Lakeview Generating Station, the restoration of Walter Alward's great limestone monument at Vimy Ridge, and the classical Greek spirit expressed in the front porches of ordinary Toronto houses dating from the early decades of the 20th century.

The result is an engrossing collection of photographs that reveal a disarming beauty in sites that both embody and encompass a rich history of industry, commerce, and human habitation.


Peter MacCallum is known for his mastery of the photographic medium, producing works that have been called "lessons in observation." He is especially interested in architecture, industry, and urban spaces. MacCallum"s photographs have been published in his 2006 book, Material World, and in magazines such as Spacing, Toronto Life, Canadian Architect, Prefix Photo, and Azure. His work has also appeared in numerous group and solo exhibitions and is included in the collections of the Art Gallery of Ontario, the National Gallery of Canada, the Toronto Dominion Bank, the Henry Morgentaler Toronto Clinic, and other corporate and private collections. He lives and works in Toronto.

208 pages
Pub date: February 19, 2016