Oh Canada, true north strong and free
is a line from our national anthem, and a symbolic reference to our independence as a nation and emergence as a natural resource-based economy. The Canadian landscape symbolizes a departure point in our history, where the economic framework in Europe at the beginning of the nineteenth century - which was based on urban, class-based industry - simply wouldn’t work in a place where timber was the dominant staple commodity.
Founded upon European demand, the timber trade brought investment and immigration to eastern Canada; it fostered economic development; and it transformed the regional environment far more radically than the earlier exploitation of fish and fur. As Mark Kasumovic references in his title, lumber has long been a staple in the Canadian export economy, and is the resource we are most widely recognized for. In his ongoing series Ideal Landscapes
Mark refers to the role that photography plays in documenting the landscape, which historically, has been used to beautify the world around us. In this image however, the use of flash and commercial lighting techniques are used less to create beauty out of a fictionalized stage, and more to call our attention to the landscape as a commodity - a bucolic re-rendering of the majestic landscape as a somewhat undignified pile of lumber.
Mark Kasumovic (along with EYE BUY ARTist Becky Comber
) was among eight emerging contemporary photographers commissioned recently by Harbourfront Center
to create a large-scale photo installation along Toronto’s waterfront exploring Ontario’s Greenbelt. His work was chosen as the Ontario winner in the Bank of Montreal BMO 1st Art Competition
in 2009 and has exhibited recently at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA), Edward Day Gallery, Toronto Image Works and The Department of Canadian Heritage.
Each week, starting in May 2010, six artists from EYE BUY ART released a site-specific, limited edition print in partnership with the Drake Hotel
. Photographs from the series are available individually here, or, you can save on shipping for a limited time and purchase the entire series as a boxed set