C.D. Hoy: in focus - News & Events - Library and Archives Canada
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Ottawa, May 20, 2003 - As part of Asian Heritage Month, the Library and Archives of Canada will present the unique and evocative film, C.D. Hoy: Portraits from the Frontier, at 8 p.m., Tuesday, May 20, 2003.

Who was C. D. Hoy? In 1902, Chow Dong Hoy arrived in British Columbia from China, penniless and alone. Self-taught, he would become the town photographer of Quesnel, British Columbia, and leave for us a rare vision of life on the British Columbia frontier. His historic photo archive contains 1,400 images of Chinese immigrants and their families, Aboriginal peoples and western settlers. At a time when other ethnographic and commercial photographers were creating the myth of the "Noble Savage" and the "Exotic Oriental", Hoy was capturing the daily lives of people around him.

The film, produced by Make Believe Media Inc. of Vancouver, draws on Hoy's photographs, his memoirs, rare footage of Canada at the turn of the century, and commentary by present day historians, archivists and artists. It provides a glimpse into a multiethnic community that endured many hardships. Iroquois/Onondaga photographer Jeff Thomas, now living in Ottawa, is one of the commentators in the film.

Faith Moosang, Vancouver photographic artist and author, who also co-directed the film, will attend and be present to answer questions after the screening. She also curated the photographic exhibition First Son: Portraits by C.D. Hoy, presented last year at the Canadian Museum of Civilization.

C.D. Hoy: Portraits from the Frontier is nominated for a 2003 Golden Sheaf Award at the Yorkton Short Film and Video Festival in Saskatchewan—Canada's oldest festival of its kind.

" C.D. Hoy's lasting gift to all of us is his story, his family, his community," says National Archivist Ian E. Wilson. "His legacy allows us to better understand our past, and by doing so, helps us to shape our future, both individually and as a nation."

The screening will be held in the auditorium of the Library and Archives of Canada, 395 Wellington Street, Ottawa. Admission is free.

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For more information, please contact:

Louisa Coates
Media relations officer
Library and Archives of Canada
Telephone: (613) 992-9361 / cell 295-5516
E-mail: media@lac-bac.gc.ca