Jalani Morgan

What brought you to Lawrence Avenue?
I was brought to Lawrence Avenue because my mom moved from government housing after being there for 10 years. My mom finally made a dream happen by getting us out of a situation and Mcowan and Lawrence was the place that she moved to. It felt different from the spaces that we occupied before. It was a symbol of my mom’s personal success.

What does Lawrence Avenue mean to you?
I think I’ll echo the last point. It’s my mom’s success. It was a fulfilled micro dream. She has many more dreams but that was one that got crossed off. She’s a single parent raising two children as a self-employed women. Therefore, for her to move out of a place that wasn’t the best place to raise children was a serious accomplishment.

What are some key words when you think of Lawrence Avenue?
Worldly. Anytime I drive through Lawrence there’s always a feeling that I’m never in the same place every time that I move. I’m either hanging with the Muslims, or the West Indians, or the elderly. Every place that I went to when I went to Lawrence felt like the world on one street.

Tell us a story about Lawrence Avenue
I used to work at McCowan and Lawrence at TD bank and that was the place that I first started shooting. I started working there when I was 21; I had just gotten my first camera from the college program that I was in. The first place that I would go to, to shoot anything there was the bank. I would shoot flowers, still life, anything that grabbed my attention. So McCowan and Lawrence housed my first investigation of myself as a photographer. I also realized that I didn’t want to work at the bank from that moment onward.


Photo by Anthony Gebrehiwot

View Anthony’s Bio + Artist Statement