Preview Petra Collins’ deeply personal solo show

The photographer is going back to her roots by staging a new show in her birthplace, Toronto

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Petra Collins’ Pacifier, Toronto 2017
“Bundle” (2016)Photography Petra Collins

Petra Collins has been feeling particularly personal of late. For her recent project with Gucci, the photographer turned to her Hungarian heritage, shooting her young cousins in the country’s famous bath houses. Now, she’s coming home again – this time, to the place where she was born: Toronto. 

From April 29th, Pacifier at the CONTACT gallery in Canada will see Collins’ lens (usually trained on the complexities of being a girl she observes around her) explore the similar nuances of her own personal journey in life. From intimate moments with family members to discovering her maternal homeland in Budapest, Collins’ dreamy diary-like insight into her world appears like the kind of family photo album you wish you had: pastel-filtered but still refreshingly unaffected. 

Sister and frequent muse, Anna, appears in a number of images in the series, dressed in Gucci or laid forehead to rainbow-tinted forehead with her friend Kathleen in a photo that exemplifies Collins’ aesthetic. This travels over to her photos from Hungary, where she similarly captured her grandmother peeking through a lace curtain, and her young cousin, dressed in a fantastical Gucci blue fringed jacket against the setting sun – a modern but no less whimsical update of The Little Prince

Perhaps the most intimate still, though, are the close ups of Collins’ father – of his surgical scars, and hands textured with age, softly contrasted with Collins’ own smooth 24-year-old ones. Together, these images form a visual meditation on the ephemerality of time, relationships and moments in life. 

‘Pacifier’ is on at CONTACT gallery, Toronto from 29 April to 23 June 2017. Head to the gallery above for a preview of what’s on show. The photographer herself will introduce the work with a talk at 2pm on 29 April

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