Westmount in Images… the Montreal Camera Club Celebrates its 125th Anniversary

Montreal Camera Club celebrates its 125th Anniversary

The Montreal Camera Club is celebrating its 125th anniversary with a special exhibition Westmount in Images in The Gallery at Victoria Hall from November 9 to December 8.

“The exhibition  includes 60 works by 31 member photographers. The unique, lived environment of Westmount is sensitively rendered in all four seasons with images ranging from aerial views of Westmount neighbourhoods to intimate shots of lush blossoms in the city’s parks. Taken as a whole, the exhibition pays homage to the beauty of the urban environment, geography, and rich architectural heritage that mark the municipality.” wrote Past President Diana Bruno.

The Montreal Camera Club (MCC) chose to focus on images of the city given its strong ties to the community. It has met regularly in Westmount for 47 years, initially at the Atwater Library and since 1985, in Westmount Park United Church.

Of the 154 current members, 32 are Westmounters, as are 11 of the 31 photographers in the exhibition. Club member and Westmount resident Jaroslava Miler launched a book of photos, A Portrait of the City of Westmount, as an independent initiative in April 2017.

The MCC is Canada’s second oldest incorporated camera club and members have enjoyed a long tradition of exhibiting their prints. From 1933 to 1969, shows were held at the Art Association of Montreal, what is now the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

The shows became international in 1942 when Westmount resident Raymond Caron organized the “First International Salon of Photography”. The last Salon in 1969 attracted entries by 1221 photographers from 38 countries.

Another special event was the MCC’s “Women’s World Exhibition of Photography” at Expo 67’s Natural Gas Hospitality Pavilion. It wasn’t until the 1980s that the club re-introduced occasional exhibitions in various downtown venues and, later, in the Westmount Public Library.

The club’s first president, David Pearce Penhallow, was a professor of botany at McGill University. Early MCC members included prominent Montrealers such as William McFarlane Notman and Frank Robert Redpath In addition,, the works of 20th century members Blossom Caron, Raymond Caron and Yseult Mounsey are included in the McCord Museum collection.

The MCC is a non-profit organization for amateur photographers, meeting weekly from September to May. The club volunteers its services as photographers at events such as the Montreal Help-Portrait, the Annual Worldwide Dance for Kindness, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s annual Montreal Light The Night Walk.

One of 69 camera clubs in the province, MCC belongs to the Société de promotion de la photographie du Québec.

For additional information please contact: Diana Bruno, mccpublicity1@gmail.com. www.montrealcameraclub.com.

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