Moyra Davey: The Faithful

A new exhibition featuring the work of one Canada’s most innovative conceptual artists.

Since her first exhibition at Ottawa’s SAW Gallery in 1984, Moyra Davey has continued to push the boundaries between photography, film, text and the human experience.

This new exhibition features 54 photographs and 7 films by Davey, along with more than a dozen works from the Gallery collection. Developed by the artist and curator Andrea Kunard, the exhibition explores the artist’s trajectory from early images of family and friends, through portraits of the detritus of everyday life, her mailed photographs, and films examining the work of authors, philosophers and artists. 

One of the exhibition’s highlights is Davey’s new film, i confess, and related photographs reflecting upon her memories of life in Quebec during the seventies and eighties.


Postponed until further notice


National Gallery of Canada
380 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1N 9N4


About the Artist

i confess, (video still), 2019. HD video with sound; 56:46 min. Collection of the artist; courtesy greengrassi, London, and Galerie Buchholz, Berlin/Cologne/New York. © Moyra Davey. Photo: courtesy the artist

Born in Toronto, Moyra Davey’s early images featured friends and family, followed by an interest in the detritus of daily life, such as whiskey bottles and stacks of vinyl records.

One of her early series, Copperheads (1990), featured enlarged close-ups of worn one-cent coins, reflecting the impact of human agency on everyday objects. Exploring similar themes, her well-known folded prints, initiated in 2009, consist of photographs that were taped together and mailed to galleries and friends, sometimes with text added. The returned photographs — creased and with bits of tape still visible — were then unfolded by Davey and assembled into grids.

In the mid-2000s, Davey began focusing on film. Comprising clips of loosely connected moving images, Davey’s films incorporate a personal narrative that functions almost as an interior monologue. Merging her own experiences with those of well-known artists, writers and philosophers, Davey’s films are reflections on the nature of existence, thought, and the human condition.

Davey has had solo exhibitions across North America and Europe, and her work can be found in numerous major public and private collections. She has also produced numerous artist’s books and publications. Moyra Davey lives and works in New York City.