People & Culture

Toronto as community: fifty years of photographs

Toronto-based photographer Vincenzo Pietropaolo chronicles Canada’s largest city over 50 years, documenting the daily lives of ordinary citizens through time 

  • Jun 02, 2023
  • 156 words
  • 1 minutes
Toronto Argonauts’ Grey Cup Victory Parade, with ticker tape, Bay St., 1983
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Toronto as Community represents more than 50 years of photography by Vincenzo Pietropaolo, whose life’s passion has been to photograph Toronto, its people, and its buildings. The photographs document the daily life of ordinary citizens, at work, at play, in celebration, in protest, and in mourning, and are grouped around short essays. These images will provoke the reader’s sense of nostalgia, inviting reflection on the city that once was, how it became the city it is, and how it continues to develop and grow into a city of our imaginations.

Homeless encampment created during the pandemic, Alexandra Park, Dec. 26, 2020.
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A bur oak in the Annex, one of Toronto’s largest and oldest tree (350+ years), 2009
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Women in attendance at Nelson Mandela’s visit to Queen’s Park, 1990.
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Immigrant women going to work in garment factories, King St. and Spadina Ave., 1973.
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Pride parade, Yonge St., 2019.
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Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, Royal Ontario Museum, under construction, Bloor St. W., 2005.
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TD Centre and First Canadian Place reflected on windows of York Centre, King St. W., 1988.
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Vietnam Peace Festival, Nathan Phillips Square, 1969.
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Dancer, Pow-Wow, Indigenous Arts Festival, Fort York, 2019.
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Victorian houses, Huron St., 1986.
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Climate Action Movement, College and University Sts., Sept. 27, 2019.
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These photographs and text are taken from the book, Toronto as Community: Fifty Years of Photographs, by Vincenzo Pietropaolo, published by Cormorant Books Inc., Toronto. Copyright 2023 © Vincenzo Pietropaolo. Used with the permission of the publisher.

To see the full collection of images, Pietropaolo’s book is available for purchase at select bookstores. Readers can search for the book in advance by visiting https://shoplocal.bookmanager.com/isbn/9781770866232 

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