Bill Perry was a first year student at York University, Fine Arts in 1974, fresh out of high school, when he took his historic 360 photo entitled “The Woman In The Window”. And, he was a ward of the state.
Bill was raised by infamous criminals. He spent his childhood on the run, living in booze cans, brothels and safe houses, He attended 24 public schools and 6 high schools using 6 different names. When he was 11 his newly married mother was killed by a drunk driver. By age 14 he was an incorrigible, unsalvageable, child prodigy of crime. which led to becoming a ward of the state. At 15 he was given a new identity and sent to a residential school in the United States. The day he turned 16, he quit crime. He returned to Canada at age 17, finished high school and moved to Toronto to study Fine Arts at York University and start his new life. One of his first artistic achievements was the 360 photo entitled “The Woman In The Window”. It only took 43 years to complete.
After graduating from York, Bill founded or co-founded numerous art organizations and projects including Starside Softworks, Computerese: The Electronic Media Magazine, Telidon at Trinity Square Video, Toronto Community Videotex (aka InterAccess), Videopage, Wm. Perry: Digital Text Services, Meaford Business News, The Colour Workshop, Meaford Dollars, Comedia, The Copy Chai and The Friday Cafe. He was also the creator of the renowned “ART vs Art: A Videotex Documentary” and published several books, including the best-selling “Be Nice In 60 Languages” and the better selling “Be Rude In 60 Languages”.
Bill will tell the story of how his 360 photo was created, starting on a frigid, snowy day in 1974 on the rooftop of the Church of the Holy Trinity.in downtown Toronto. And, he will try to answer the question “Is this the first 360 photo in Canadian history?”