Points of View

A National Human Rights Photography Exhibition

Points of View is a national juried human rights photography exhibition. We crowd-sourced exhibition photographs from people across Canada. The photographs tell stories of passion and protest, family and friendship, suffering and struggle, hunger and hope. Through this exhibition, Canadians share their views on human rights.

The 70 photographs explore human rights within four themes: Freedom of Expression, Reconciliation, Human Rights and the Environment, and Inclusion and Diversity.

Points of View is showing in the Level 1 Gallery until February 4, 2018.


Where did the photographs for Points of View come from?

From all across Canada!

We issued a Call for Entries in the fall of 2016. Photographers uploaded their images through an online portal. The submission deadline was December 31, 2016. We received nearly 1,000 entries, made up of incredibly diverse images from all across Canada. 


How did you choose the photographs featured in the exhibition?

A diverse, multi-disciplinary jury selected 70 photographs for the exhibition. Jurors have wide-ranging backgrounds, in areas such as human rights, law, museum curation, photography, photojournalism and art. The jury also selected the overall winners for each category.


What is the People’s Choice award?

This award is given to the photographer who received the most votes from online and in-gallery visitors. Voting for the People’s Choice award is now closed. Visit the Points of View exhibition in our Level 1 Gallery or view all the exhibition photos online.


How did you choose the four themes for Points of View (Freedom of Expression, Reconciliation, Human Rights and the Environment, and Inclusion and Diversity)?

We set out to find themes that would lend themselves well to the visual medium of photography, and that would be broad enough to encourage entries with different interpretations and from diverse perspectives. We aimed for important human rights themes that would be both timeless, and critically current. These themes align well with the themes for Canada 150: diversity and inclusion, reconciliation from nation to nation with Indigenous peoples, the environment, and youth.


Why a crowd-sourced photography exhibition?

To mark Canada’s 150th, we wanted to develop an exhibition with the active involvement and participation of Canadians. Made up entirely of photographs submitted by members of the public, Points of View captures how we view and experience human rights in Canada, and around the world, at this important milestone of our nation’s history.


What was your overall impression of the entries?

Collectively, the photographs for Points of View capture a large and diverse range of powerful human rights stories. They offer a mosaic of how Canadians see human rights issues at play in their lives, at home and abroad. Individually, some deal with topics that are easily recognizable as “human rights issues.” Others shine a light on stories where the human rights impact may be less obvious, but no less important. Our hope is that the insights offered by the photographs in Points of View will encourage people to reflect on human rights in ways they may have not considered before.