Leah Denbok: An inspiration for us all
This post is a little bit more serious than the usual lighthearted posts on this blog. That’s because it deals with the very sad and very real issue of homelessness. 235,000 Canadians experience homelessness every year. Newmarket’s Old Town Hall is currently featuring an exhibit by the talented photographer Leah Denbok. Leah’s work has been catching on across the country and she has been featured everywhere from the Globe and Mail to CBC. Now you too can see her and her work right here in Newmarket.
Leah was inspired by her own mother’s story, who was rescued from the streets of Kolkata, India by Saint Teresa (formerly Mother Teresa) at three years old. At only 18, Leah has traveled throughout North America capturing the images and the stories of the homeless. Her goal is to shine a spotlight on the struggles of people living on the streets and to humanize the homeless so that we realize at any time we could be in their shoes. This is powerful stuff. The black and white exhibit is raw and it demonstrates a haunting beauty that you really have to see for yourself.
You can hear more about Leah’s work from the artist herself this Thursday, August 16 during at artist talk at Old Town Hall (7 p.m.) Leah’s book Nowhere to Call Home will be on sale. Royalties from the book sales are going towards the Salvation Army – Barrie Bayside Mission Centre, an organization where some of Leah’s models have lived. Check out Leah’s recent interview on tvo’s The Agenda with Steve Paikin to learn more about her book and her story. The photos exhibited are also on sale with partial proceeds benefiting Newmarket’s own local homeless shelter, Inn from the Cold.
Wow, I wish I had the kind of social conscience and empathy at such a young age that Leah Denbok radiates. I definitely encourage you to check out this eye opening exhibit.
Old Town Hall (460 Botsford Street) Gallery viewing hours:
Tuesday to Friday, 4 to 8 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.