Pic Picks

The Link’s photo blog. Selections of our best pictures each week, from sports, arts, news and beyond.

  • March For Migrant Trans Rights

    Hundreds of protesters chanted, “This is march, not a parade,” while walking East down Ste. Catherine St. on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

    Ahead of Montreal Pride, the Fiérté Trans group said that Quebec is the only province in Canada that won’t update the names and sex identifiers of trans migrant people. As a result, those affected have trouble gaining access to basic services such as healthcare, jobs and housing.

    The Parti Québécois tabled Bill 895 at the National Assembly in the Spring to allow trans migrant people to have their documents updated by the provincial government, but the bill has yet to go to a vote.

    The march made its way through the Gay Village, ending at Parc Charles S. Campbell.

  • A Festive Media Conference in Detroit

    Last week, a handful of Link editors drove down to Detroit, Michigan, for 19th edition of the Allied Media Conference, attending a series of workshops on community social justice organizing by way of participatory media.

    The conference originally began in Bowling Green, Ohio as the Zine Conference in 1999, but changed its name to The Allied Media Conference in 2002 and moved to Detroit in 2007.

    Staging at Wayne State University, just north of Midtown Detroit, the AMC hosted over 250 workshops and classes over the four days, taught by professionals from across North America. The conference itself was heavily promoted as a safe space and celebrated diversity above all.

    On top of classes and workshops, attendees enjoyed film screenings, panel discussions, communal dinners, museum and city tours and an array of music and dancing events every evening. One Link editor overheard a fellow conference goer describe the AMC as “the Lollapalooza of conferences.”

    The highlight of this year’s AMC was the Opening Ceremony, which was held in The Detroit Institute of Arts beautiful and historic theatre. Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza gave an inspiring and uplifting speech, and Mona Haydar performed her infamous “Wrap My Hijab” song with a crew of backup dancers.

    The conference also included a large book fair, where artists from across North America showcased and sold their books, t-shirts, photography, prints, and homemade booty shorts.

    On the last day of the conference, Families United 4 Justice, a group uniting and supporting families whose loved ones were murdered by police, held a vigil for Philando Castile. Mothers and sisters of victims shared their personal and moving, firsthand experiences of dealing with the judicial system and the loss of their loved ones.

  • Occupation for Social Housing

    Members from the Front d’action populaire en réaménagement urbain occupied the building of 60 Milton St. to bring attention to the lack of attention on social housing in Montreal, on May 23.

    In a statement, FRAPRU said the building has been vacant for several years. The action came during a week of actions by the organization in opposition to rent increases, evictions and to encourage the use of vacant buildings for new housing projects.

    Following the occupation by around 15 activists, Montreal riot police surrounded the building and blocked entry inside. Around 50 additional activists stood on Milton chanting slogans in favour of more resources for social housing. Several times activists attempted to throw bags of bread through the second floor window.

    Other than one arrant bag of bread which hit a riot police officer on the head, the protest went largely without violent incident.

    Hours later, the activists came out on their own accord after police prepared a battering ram and threatened to storm the building.

    They were released from police custody shortly after.

  • St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2017

    Parades are a sumptuous visual feast for a photographer. Why is this?

    The answer can be summed up in one word: proximity.

    For one day, complete strangers from across the spectrum of life—rich and poor, old and young—feel compelled to congregate as one giant, chaotic mass.

    People whose lives are so disparate and unalike, who just yesterday were rabidly avoiding each other, now find themselves willingly breathing down each other’s necks, craning for a view of grown men riding motorized bathtubs, or to get a glimpse of a giant, roving bust of Sir Winston Churchill.

    The camera has a unique ability to highlight these absurdities, all in a single frame. Plus, in the clutter of the whole event, people are less inclined to punch you out when you point a lens in their face.

    It is truly a photographer’s dream.

  • Montreal Vigil for Brussels Victims

    About one hundred people gathered outside the Belgian consulate on Wednesday, March 24, to show solidarity for the victims of the attacks on Brussels.

    Photos Andrej Ivanov