Jeff Bierk: Top Left

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Jeff Bierk: Top Left
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Jeff Bierk: Top Left says
Top Left

Jeff Bierk

In collaboration with “Jimmy” James Evans, Donald Evans, Brent, Bluenose, & Carl Lance Bonnici

Do not let beauty waste in the hairless leg, the supple back, the orgasmic flash in the forest, the hyper saturated sky over the ocean. Let it reign the pale night, the unhinged mane, the crooked nose. Now that the leaves are stripped of their ochre and the wounds of their crimson and all are soaked in soft cyan, do they blend to your walls? Here then, let the vision of Donny sublimated in silk, laid down in leaves wipe away the great distortion. And, if you allow him, Jimmy, taking cover twice over in himself as he has for an entire life, reveals the beauty of all the time in between.

- Simone Schmidt

In Top Left, Jeff Bierk continues his documentation of the Toronto neighbourhoods where he lives and works, with collaborators “Jimmy” James Evans, Bluenose, Brent, Donny Evans and Carl Lance Bonnici. While often mischaracterized as a street photographer, Bierk has distinguished himself by developing a collaborative portraiture practice that interrogates the ethics of the growing trend. Working in opposition to the widening of class and digital divides, the collaborators work with a principle of full transparency throughout the process of making photographs, mounting shows and profit splitting. In doing so, the photographer acknowledges that without the labour that his collaborators put into daily life, none of the photographs would be possible.

Jeff Bierk (b. 1982, Peterborough, ON) is an artist who works in photography and video. He works at Downtown Camera, one of the last camera stores in Toronto. He has no formal education or training in photography. Bierk’s work has been shown in group and solo exhibitions at A/C Repair, UTAC, O’Born Contemporary, General Hardware, Fountain Contemporary, Mark Christopher Gallery, Toronto, Art Gallery of Peterborough, Peterborough, CRAM Gallery, St. Catharines, and Platform Gallery, Winnipeg, along with a public installation in Ponti di Breta, Italy. He has been published in Flash Forward (Selected Winner Canada, 2012, 2015), Night Papers (Night Gallery, LAABF), Canadian Art, Carbon Paper, Four Poets and Editorial Magazine. Currently his collaborative work with “Jimmy” James Evans and Carl Lance Bonnici, “10 Blankets” is a featured public installation in CONTACT Photography Festival 2016.

The artist gratefully acknowledges support from the Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts.
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By: Mulherin Toronto