The Entire City Project: Royal Ontario Museum

Michael Awad


For over a decade, Michael Awad’s practice has been focused on the ambitious pursuit of photographing every facet of the urban experience in every city. Aptly titled, The Entire City Project, its scope includes the recording of the entire physical infrastructure of Toronto. Using custom-built photographic equipment, custom software, and techniques adapted from military aerial reconnaissance photography, Awad has developed a distinctive style of documenting cities with sequential, horizontal bands of imagery. The photographs unfold like a text, telling a story through multiple views that echo the experience of perception over time. The Entire City Project embraces the very notion of place-identity, extensively mapping the built environment and studying how people navigate through the city and interact with it.

In celebration of the Royal Ontario Museum’s 100th Anniversary, Awad was commissioned to take his unique vision inside one of Canada’s most iconic cultural institutions. For one year, Awad was a constant presence at the ROM—moving silently through the Museum with his specialty cameras, capturing the galleries, collection vaults, workshops, laboratories, staff offices, and back-end utility rooms. This project marks not only the first time the ROM has commissioned a work of this kind, in which the institution is the subject, but it is also the first time a major public institution has been captured in its entirety.

 

Co-presented with the Royal Ontario Museum

Opening reception on May 9 - Friday Night Live at the ROM.