Canadian Documentary Tackles Gender Violence, Race and Privilege Favorite 



May 6 2013



The annual Toronto film festival Hot Docs is underway, and one of the featured documentaries tackles the tragic and gruesome story of serial killer Robert Pickton. The notorious murderer was responsible for the deaths of at least 26 women, many of whom were Aboriginals, drug addicts and prostitutes from Vancouver's rough Downtown Eastside. The case attracted great media attention and public outrage, much of which was directed at the seeming lack of urgency from the local police, who were accused of prejudiced behavior based on the class and race of the victims involved.

"The Exhibition" focuses on both the police investigation of the case, and artist Pamela Masik's representation of the victims. Masik began exploring the subject in 2006, when she painted a series of large-scale portraits inspired by a police poster of 69 women who had recently gone missing. These would eventually be exhibited in a show entitled "The Forgotten."

Masik's work conveys the struggle these women faced throughout their lives, and the injustice in how their deaths were handled. Suggesting a systemic tendency to assign inequal worth to different kinds of victims, Masik at one point asks, “Imagine if 69 women went missing in West Vancouver?”

Posted by agoudge on