Want to know more about the photographs in the Chew On This series? Click the locations below to discover more about each photograph.
The Recipe for Chew On This!
Chew On This! is the brainchild of the Museum’s public programmers Sara and Lauren. Tasked with finding a way to connect the Museum’s large and diverse photographic collection with a downtown audience, Sara and Lauren thought of restaurant goers as a captive yet interested audience who might gain insight, understanding, and appreciation of the city’s past while out for a bit to eat.
Sara and Lauren didn’t want looking at photographs to be the end of the experience. They wanted to find a way to have participants also discuss the images among themselves. This meant that the photos had to have more layers that would be engaging and ignite chatter in any audience, like a group of friends celebrating a birthday or a couple on their first date.
The additional challenge meant special care and attention to finding just the right photographs to include that would generate discussion and ‘friendly banter.’ This process revealed a lot about the work and act of curating an exhibit or program like this one. Different images garner different reactions from different people. One element that draws my attention might not be the same element that draws your attention.
There is really no correct answer to the discussion questions or indeed the examination of the layers of each photograph.
What’s more important than finding an answer to a discussion question or identifying a street or building or face in each photo is considering how your personal context in the present might influence your interpretation of these photographs and our shared history.
Further still, how might these historical photographs influence your life today?
We hope that these photographs will help you explore your own perspective on our history and life today, all the while enjoying some friendly banter and yummy delights.
Chew On This! is presented by the St. Catharines Museum & Welland Canals Centre
Thank you to participating restaurants for hosting Chew On This!
Thank you to the City of St. Catharines Economic Development and Tourism Services division for co-presenting Chew On This!
Thank you to the St. Catharines Downtown Association, our presenting partner.