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The new realities of living longer revealed as new photo exhibit

PhotoSensitive is a diverse group of professional photographers who volunteer their cameras to give a voice to those who are marginalized by popular culture, and they have now taken the initiative to capture the world of aging.


By 2050, one in four Canadians will be over the age of 65. As life expectancy rises, more adults are healthy and active as they pass that milestone. With this shift in Canada’s population where there are more adults over 50 than youth under 17, how will Canadians change? The normal age of retirement is losing relevance as more seniors are keeping their careers, while on the other hand an increasing amount have not saved enough for their retirement or start too late. Those that must work in old age face discrimination from the job market.


The exhibit opened Monday, September 15, and is on display until October 6 at the Royal Bank Plaza, South Tower Lobby, 200 Bay Street in Toronto.

For many like Marie Bérubé, caring for the elderly can be a full-time job. Marie took an early retirement to care for her father André, who is 93 years old. Photo by François Pesant for PhotoSensitive

Don Grant is the perfect example of the hard working Canadian. He has never experienced the luxury of a steady job but was always able to make sure he paid his bills by doing whatever odd job he could find. Now, at the age of 78, Don is living off his pension plan where he receives $1,400 a month. Photo by Richard Barclay for PhotoSensitive

May, pictured in her room at Nellie’s, a women’s shelter in downtown Toronto. “I have experienced a lot of trauma in my life. I am homeless. My husband took away everything. But my journey has brought me to a better path in life.” Photo by Annie Sakkab for PhotoSensitive

Like a growing number of Canadian grandparents, Margaret Claus has once again assumed the role of caregiver, this time to raise her great-granddaughter. “It’s challenging trying to do the things of a 30-year-old when I’m nearly 80,” says Margaret. Photo by Chloe Ellingson for PhotoSensitive

Al Hollinger loves music and motorcycles although his vintage collection of motorcycles is safely stored, and his harmonica only comes out on special occasions. He faithfully looks forward to visits from music therapist Jo Anne Tait, who has been working with Al for the past seven years at the Mountain View Manor in Delta, B.C. Photo by Kim Stallknecht for PhotoSensitive

Selima Onalik and Minnie Etok Morgan, both 69-years-old, from Kangiqsualujjuaq in Nunavik, are taking every chance they have to be out on the land in order to live the traditional Inuit life. Photo by Marc-Andre Pauze for PhotoSensitive

Born in Barbados, and now living in Woodstock, Ontario, Patrick Ishmael has not cut his hair since he was 19 years old. The hair on the top of his head is now white but the ends are black. Photo by Dave Chidley for PhotoSensitive

Dorothy Ramsdale, 90, visits her husband Ted, 91, in his room at the Dorothy Macham Home at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto. The home is a state-of-the-art facility for veterans with challenging behaviours related to dementia. Photo by Kevin Van Paassen for PhotoSensitive

While getting ready for her party Orma looks up at the sign on the wall that says 'Congratulations on your 111th birthday!' “That can't be right," she says. The small gathering in her room breaks out in laughter. "Yes, it's true, you’re 111 today." Photo by Michele Taras for PhotoSensitive

Jimmy Laughlin, 90, has lived in Chilliwack, B.C. his whole life. His biggest passion, beyond family, is flying his single-seat, dual engine ultra-light plane up and down the eastern Fraser Valley. Photo by Rick Collins for PhotoSensitive

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