How has photography shaped contemporary society?

-   TVO's Photography Month turns its lens on some of the world's
        greatest photographers

    -   New contest invites viewers to take part in Photography Month

TORONTO, April 13 /CNW/ - What does a photograph reveal about a subject, an image, the artist or the society we live in? TVO's Photography Month focuses its lens on the artistry, the craft and the power of photography. Beginning on Sunday May 2 and running throughout the month, TVO showcases documentaries that profile the lives and work of some of the world's most influential photographers and examines the ways in which their images have reflected and shaped their time.

TVO's Photography Month is presented by Henry's and airs in conjunction with Toronto's Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival. This year the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival examines the role of photography in contemporary society.

TVO invites viewers to enter a new TVO Photography Month contest:

-   Participants are eligible to win a digital camera prize pack valued
        at $950.
    -   Participants may enter online at tvo.org/photomonth and must submit a
        photo that reflects the role of photography in contemporary society.
    -   A panel of photo experts from Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival
        will select the top entries, and post them online on June 15.
    -   From June 15 to June 28 viewers can vote for their favourites.
    -   The winner will be announced on Tuesday June 29 at
        tvo.org/photomonth.

Descriptions of TVO's Photography Month programs follow. To view clips of the programs, please visit TVO's May Media Highlights at: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/mmnr/tvo/may2010/

The True Meaning of Pictures
    Sunday May 2 at 10:30 pm ET

    Filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal examines the work of controversial
    photographer Shelby Lee Adams and his striking portraits of families in
    Appalachia.

    Stars by Helmut Newton
    Thursday May 6 at 10 pm ET

    Upon the publication of the 466-page, 66-pound retrospective book of his
    work, celebrity subjects discuss the style and influence of the late
    fashion photographer Helmut Newton.

    Annie Leibovitz: Life through a Lens
    Sunday May 9 at 9 pm ET

    The woman behind the iconic images of Hollywood luminaries, pop culture
    glitterati and political power hitters is the subject of this fascinating
    documentary that charts her life and career through the various phases
    that shaped it. From childhood, the tumultuous 60s and touring with the
    Rolling Stones to Leibovitz's work at Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair
    magazines and later, motherhood, the film reveals the evolution and
    aspirations of one of today's most influential visual artists.

    What Remains: The Life and Work of Sally Mann
    Thursday May 13 at 10 pm ET

    Oscar-nominated and Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Steven Cantor captures
    American photographer Sally Mann as she undertakes her latest project,
    What Remains - a provocative photo series that contemplates death and
    decay, and America's attitudes towards dying. Along the way, Cantor
    paints a revealing portrait of the artist as she returns to her family
    home in Virginia and speaks candidly about her own feelings on death, her
    personal life and career trajectory.

    Ansel Adams
    Sunday May 16 at 9 pm ET

    An in-depth exploration of the life and art of photographer Ansel Adams,
    best known for his dramatic black-and-white images of America's
    wilderness areas, and his efforts to conserve the nature that he
    photographed.

    Houses of Hristina
    Wednesday May 19 at 10 pm ET

    This contemplative documentary takes a look at socio-economic class and
    the practical and emotional challenges faced by immigrants who seek a
    better life outside of their country of birth. The film captures this
    through a snapshot of the life of a young Bulgarian woman, Hristina, who
    spends her days cleaning elegant homes in Amsterdam and feels like a
    prisoner, invisible to the outside world. Dreaming of one day being a
    professional photographer, Hristina captures her everyday routine with
    striking black and white photographs.

    Eloquent Nude: The Love and Legacy of Edward Weston and Charis Wilson
    Thursday May 20 at 9 pm ET

    Edward Weston was an emerging genius of modern photography in 1934 when
    he met the much younger Charis Wilson, his muse, model and, eventually,
    wife. Wilson, who had a 12-year relationship with Weston, was the subject
    of the artist's famous nudes. Filmmaker Ian McLuskey chronicles the
    couple's relationship, their creative process and the way in which they
    transformed photography - and each other - in the depths of the Great
    Depression.

    Immediately following Eloquent Nude, catch an encore presentation of the
    half-hour film Peppers and Nudes: The Photographer Edward Weston offering
    more on the life and work of one of 20th-century photography's great
    figures.

    Dolce Vita Africana
    Wednesday May 26 2010 at 10 pm ET

    A culture seen through a camera lens: Malian photographer Malick Sidibe's
    snapshots from the late 1950s to the early 1970s capture the carefree
    spirit of youth asserting their freedom from colonialism in the early
    days of Malian independence - until a coup ushered in decades of austere
    military dictatorship.

    The Women of Sanne Sannes
    Thursday May 27 at 10 pm ET

    Filmmaker Frodo Terpstra delves into the life of Dutch photographer Sanne
    Sannes in a quest to understand more about the artist and his work.
    Sannes, who was killed in a car accident in 1967 at the age of 30, left a
    legacy of thousands of dark, erotic and mysterious images of women.

This year, on the 30th anniversary of his death, Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival honours Marshall McLuhan, whose theories on the role of media in society are still highly influential today. To mark this special anniversary, TVO will air Brave New Words, a conversation between Marshall McLuhan and author Tom Wolfe (1970) on Friday May 7 at 10 pm followed by Marshall McLuhan in conversation with Mike McManus (1977) at 10:30 pm.

Brave New Words: Marshall McLuhan and Tom Wolfe (1970)
    Friday May 7 at 10 pm ET

    In this historic gem from the TVO archives, Wolfe and McLuhan sit in
    McLuhan's Toronto backyard discussing literary styles and personalities,
    jokes, music and television from a unique and provocative point of view.

    Marshall McLuhan interview with Mike McManus (1977)
    Friday May 7 at 10:30 pm

    In one of the few interviews that Marshall McLuhan granted before his
    death in 1980, he talks with TVO host Mike McManus about modern
    regionalism and separatism, nostalgia, violence and identity, television
    as an addictive tranquillizer, propaganda and his reasons for becoming a
    Roman Catholic.

About TVO

TVO is Ontario's public educational media organization and a trusted source of interactive educational content that informs, inspires and stimulates curiosity and thought. TVO's vision is to empower people to be engaged citizens of Ontario through educational media. For more information, visit tvo.org.

Where to find TVO

Cable channel 2 (channel may vary in some areas), Bell TV channel 265, Star Choice channel 353.

For further information: Media contact: Lesley Horlick, TVO Communications, (416) 484-2600 ext. 2281, lhorlick@tvo.org