Exciting New MOV Summer Exhibit Reveals Candid Snapshots By Vancouver’s Most Prolific Street Photographer

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Photo credit: Museum of Vancouver

Foncie Pulice, Vancouver’s most prolific and beloved street photographer, took about 15 million photos of Vancouver residents from the 1930s to the 1970s shooting in hotspots along Granville Street and Hastings Street. Museum of Vancouver (in Vanier Park in Kitsilano) is offering a rare chance to peek back into Vancouver urban history at their new exhibit of his work: Foncie’s Fotos: Man on the Street, opening June 6, 2013.

Foncie wasn’t aiming for fame. From his 20s onward, street photography was his job. He did what many other street photographers of the day did. He took photos of citizens dressed up and hitting the town. Whether it was a special date, a family event or hanging out with friends, getting your photo taken was part of the downtown Vancouver experience. People expected it. The next day, you picked up your photo at a downtown storefront studio. The photos were taken head-to-toe candid shots when you were just being –not unlike an old fashioned version of Facebook.

Foncie stood out from the other street photographers because he took more photos. And he was friendly. For many Vancouverites, Foncie’s candid actions shots of residents strutting their stuff may feature someone they know.  In fact, according to MOV, at a time when personal cameras were rare and family portraits were expensive, Foncie sometimes created the only surviving image of a family member. If you think you have one of Foncie’s photos in your scrapbook, they want to hear from you. You can share your photo and story via KnowledgeNetwork’s site Foncie’s Corner.

You can check out Foncie’s photos at MOV starting this Thursday. Find details on location, hours and admission here. You can read more about Foncie Pulice, the only son of Italians immigrants Filomene and Francesco Pulice,  here.

Last modified: June 5, 2013

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