The post-war suburbs transformed our national ideal of the good life. The farmland outside the city suddenly sprouted houses, schools, apartment buildings, community centres, shopping malls—all of it new, all of it promising something different: the best of both the city and the country, offering privacy and quiet and space, but with the excitement and opportunity of downtown only a short commute away.

More recently, suburbia has been criticised as conformist and car-dependent. But when these photographers turned their cameras on the suburbs, they saw more than parking lots and lawns.

This exhibit from the City of Toronto Archives features the work of official city photographers, as well as freelancers and amateurs, as they documented people raising families, building communities, working together and celebrating together in the wide open world known as the suburbs.

Exhibition now continuing until 2019