January 21, 2015

Burn with Desire: Photography and Glamour and Anti-Glamour Portraits of Women

Ryerson Image Centre at Ryerson University
Gene Daniels, Untitled [Marilyn Monroe at the Golden Globe Awards ceremony] (detail), March 1962. Gelatin silver print. BS.2005.190094/113-1201. The Black Star Collection, Ryerson Image Centre.

Burn with Desire: Photography and Glamour
Curator: Gaëlle Morel

From Edward Steichen’s iconic portrait of silent film star Gloria Swanson (1924) to Annie Leibovitz’s influential gatefold covers for Vanity Fair‘s annual Hollywood issue (1995–2014), this multimedia exhibition offers a sweeping, yet considered view of photography’s role in defining glamour since the 1920s. Drawing on prints from the RIC’s Black Star Collection of photo-reportage, as well as other holdings internationally, this multimedia exhibition provides a historical survey encompassing Hollywood studio portraits, red-carpet premieres, and “behind-the-scenes” snapshots of film sets and stars at rest. Alongside these photographs, a series of artistic projects offer a critical address of traditional ideals of glamour, including works by Richard Avedon, Cindy Sherman, and Andy Warhol. The Ryerson Image Centre gratefully acknowledges the support of our media sponsors for Burn with Desire: Toronto Life, FASHION Magazine and Toronto Star.

Related events:

Wednesday, February 4, 6pm: Exhibition tour with curator Gaëlle Morel

Monday, March 23, noon–4pm and 5–8pm: Carole Tanenbaum vintage jewelry benefit

Wednesday, March 25, 6pm: Exhibition tour with RIC director Paul Roth


Anti-Glamour: Portraits of Women
Curator: Gaëlle Morel

The exhibition features photographic and video portraits by artists who address issues of female representation. Works by Marie Le Mounier, Katherine Lannin, Rebecca Belmore, Ange Leccia, Gunilla Josephson, Jo Spence and Leila Zahiri offer a contemporary counterpoint to the traditional standards that have shaped female identity. These projects range from ironic appropriation of attractive femmes fatales conjured by the film industry, to empowered bare-breasted figures proudly confronting the viewer. The works on view offer an alternative to imagery that often reduces women’s individuality to a recurrent iconography of vulnerability and seduction.

Related events:

Wednesday, February 4, 6pm: Exhibition tour with curator Gaëlle Morel

Wednesday, February 25, 7pm: Howard and Carole Tanenbaum Lecture featuring Rebecca Belmore (location TBC)


Visit our website for up-to-date information on all upcoming exhibitions and events.


Media contact
Erin Warner, Ryerson Image Centre: [email protected] / T+416 979 5000 x7032


Two photography exhibitions opening at the Ryerson Image Centre

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