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SPAO Open House and 2018 Lineage Exhibition: Ontogeny


The SPAO Centre’s Annual Open House features Ontogeny by Whitney Lewis-Smith

On November 2, 2018, from 5 to 11 pm, join us at the SPAO Centre for SPAO’s Annual Open House and the opening reception of the 2018 Lineage Exhibition, Ontogeny, featuring the work of the Canadian photo-based artist Whitney Lewis-Smith.

Where: 77 Pamilla Street, Ottawa (Little Italy)

Reception and Open House: 2 November 2018 from 5-11 PM, remarks at 7PM.

RSVP: via Facebook event page ( or by emailing with the subject line “SPAO Gallery RSVP”.

Whitney Lewis-Smith, What Came in with the Flowers, 2014.

SPAO’s annual Open House is our largest event of the year. Visitors to the SPAO Centre can tour the facility and learn more about our space, a purpose-designed arts facility and Ottawa’s innovative photo hub. Meet faculty and students, see the work of current diploma students, tour the gallery, studio, and darkroom facilities, and get a sneak peek at the second floor expansion. Speeches will take place at 7 pm.

The SPAO Centre Gallery’s annual Lineage Exhibition celebrates artistic achievement while highlighting an artist’s connection to our community. The 2018 exhibition presents work by Whitney Lewis-Smith, an alumna of the SPAO diploma program. She works primarily with glass plate negatives and builds elaborate sets as a means to explore humanity’s relationship with the natural world. Her new work uses heliogravure printing to translate photographic images into copper plate etchings. At a recent residency in Mexico City, she completed what may be the largest heliogravure photographic etchings to date worldwide. One of these etchings will be on display in the exhibition, along with glass plate negatives and prints, to give a full sense of the processes involved in Lewis-Smith’s artistic production.

Ontogeny continues until December 21. It is free and open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays between 12 and 5 pm, or by appointment. A panel discussion Fabricated Visions will occur on November 16 at 7 pm as part of our Parfocal Lens series. Whitney Lewis-Smith will be joined by Dina Goldstein and Diana Thorneycroft in a discussion moderated by Jonathan Hobin. The SPAO Centre Gallery is barrier-free and fully accessible.

Whitney Lewis-Smith completed her photographic education at the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa, where she is now a full-time instructor. Her work is in many prominent private and public collections, including the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, the City of Ottawa Art Collection, and the private collection of Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau and Justin Trudeau. She is represented by Galerie St-Laurent+Hill in Ottawa.

The SPAO Centre is home to the Ottawa region's only independent and critical gallery space dedicated to photographic and video art. Gallery programming includes the exhibition of photographic and video art work by emerging and established artists, working locally, nationally and internationally.



Designed with the generous support of Hobin Architecture, the SPAO Centre is a multi-purpose photo hub, which is the only one of its kind in Canada. Mere steps from Preston Street’s vibrant entertainment district, and Ottawa’s new light rail transit system, the SPAO Centre houses:

  • The School of Photographic Arts: Ottawa (SPAO), the world-renowned, independent, non-profit school of photographic arts, offering a two-year college diploma program, as well as continuing education opportunities in all aspects of contemporary, traditional and alternative photographic processes.
  • SPAO’s International Artist Residency, bringing both local and international photographic artists together to further develop and share their craft in Ottawa. Next application deadline: Dec. 7, 2018.
  • The only independent and critical Photographic Art Gallery in the National Capital Region. The gallery showcases work by local, national and international artists.
  • A new, custom-designed, SPAO Space for events, performances, exhibitions, and receptions.

613.562.3824 WWW.SPAO.CA





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