Good to meet some photographers and friends that I haven’t met for several years, we’re all getting used to group meetings face-to-face again. Couple of dozen turnout for the first meet of London GPN of 2024, now back in Kennington. I do like the Camera Club’s space there, I find the juxtaposition of steel and painted brick, circles and rectangles is visually stimulating. Shame I had to leave before the photo show as I for a dawn flight the next morning.
The stunning thing with this outdoor exhibition of double portraits is the gap between the curators’ rhetoric and the relative indifference of the public passing these large prints in the square outside Marseille Hotel de Ville and the Vieux Port.
It would be foolish to dismiss any photography initiative in the land of Cartier-Bresson and not far from the photography college at Arles so I was people-watching, looking to see which (if any) of the images exhibited by The Anonymous Project lived up to the rhetoric. We are told these images were found and purchased as an archive with very little information as to provenance, names etc. Display of these images is the work of The Anonymous Project so what we are seeing is a double selection, by both the photographer(s) - names unknown - and then the curators.
A fascinating chat with Ruth Wharton at her exhibition in EVAN Gallery and Studios, it’s always good to discuss outside one’s own genre. She’s a licensed handler of explosives precursors and poisons (EPP), which means she can handle the materials required for etchings, such as Nitric Acid. Her exhibition features a number of etching techniques: aquatint, photogravure as well as direct etching, ie scratching the plate. Her results are intriguingly different to much of the art which you see around at galleries. To my eye, Ruth Wharton’s images are more intense and maybe more engaging. There is also a slight 3D effect from the thickness of the ink layer on the paper, particularly noticeable with the small size of the etchings she’s exhibiting. My photo shows only one of her many displays; Ruth’s exhibition takes the whole of Gallery 4A, with the ceramics of Rebecca Callis. As well as etchings, Ruth Wharton is also showing a couple of panels of photographs, nicely catching the personalities of the people she features, printed to black and white and mostly quite small prints.
Rewarding trek to the London Lighthouse gallery to enjoy GPN’s latest annual photography exhibition. A diverse show of prints, videos and slide shows by photographers of the GPN, the Gay Photographers Network. There’s no overall theme to the exhibition, all the images are intensely personal with a refreshing absence of group-think.
I have fond memories of the GPN meeting in March 2020, which was the last organised event I participated in before everything stopped. Great news that GPN has re-emerged and with a strong exhibition.
My reworking of the exhibition’s poster with screengrabs of some of the artists from the guided walkaround
AndroTechne present their debut digital exhibition this autumn in a three dimensional online virtual space of three connected rooms, each having a different theme and feel. The advanced technology creating the virtual exhibition space makes it possible to “walk” around the exhibition, stop and browse where you feel you wish to. Meanwhile some exhibits animate and some play music. This gives quite the best integrated feel to media such as video or abstract virtual images along with traditional paint and flat images. There’s immediately a “wow!” factor, the technology is not off-puttingly clunky and it presents well this exhibition which is very rich in ideas and innovation.