On 12th October I visited Brighton Photo Biennial with some of my fellow students. I attended in 2014 and enjoyed the experience so was keen to return. The biggest thing of note is that the exhibition takes place over such a large area and time frame it is worth taking a few days in Brighton to really make the most of all that is on show. There was also something that I realise whilst there was the limited information and exhibition names at times would make me think I wasn’t entirely interested in visiting. Listening to other students views though there may have been some exhibits I missed out on.
The exhibition we attended from the main Photo Biennial were ‘Into the outside: the story so far’ and ‘Reimagined’ both on display at the University of Brighton Galleries – Grand Parade. Whilst I had an appreciation of some of the images, a lot of what was displayed felt conceptual and I wasn’t clear on their purpose. I also noticed there was a lot of nudity within both exhibitions, I have no issues with nudity and hoot it myself, however sometimes I question if there is an absolute need or if it just for the sake of nudity. This is a question I will ponder and perhaps research at a later date. The things I really took from the exhibitions are the variations in presentation and display. Unfortunately we were not able to take photos in the gallery. Listed below were things to consider:
- Grid display of many images very effective, layout is important
- Table with glass top, images displayed beneath
- Glass fronted frames reflect light and surroundings which may not be a good thing as it is distracting and detracts from the main focus which should be the image on display.
By far the most enjoyable part of the Biennial is the accompanying Photo Fringe, her ether are more obscure exhibitions in cafes, bars, little offices etc. I had listed a few to visit, trying to keep their locations fairly close to one another. The frustrating think about the fringe is that some of the locations are difficult to find and were closed despite being advertised as open.
This was a small exhibition at the Library, we stumbled on this whilst hoping to find photobooks. There had been an extensive display of these at the last Biennial, so we had assumed there would be again, we were disappointed to fine there were none there this year and we couldn’t locate them in any other location. I really liked the simple but effective layout of this exhibition, there were gif images playing on the screen of similar still images from the wall.
This exhibition takes place outside the library, I like this idea of industrial frames I may put this forward as a suggestion for our end of year exhibition.
Ali Tollervey – Surface
I had a mixed reaction to this little exhibition, it took place in a small restaurant, I was thankful t was quiet so that we could really take time to look at the images. A number of the images were very striking, I particularly liked the landscapes and there were a couple of interesting portraits. Some of the images in the collection didn’t seem to fit. What this makes me realise is that when displaying it should be clear to the viewers why the images are there and how they fit into the collection.
In interesting point is the image layout sheet included with the display, the information about image/concept could be placed here.
Sarah Ketelaars – Seeking Beauty
This was one of the exhibitions I was most looking forward to, from the images that were available to view online I really liked the abstract nature. Unfortunately when we arrived the gallery was closed. I had a good look through the window and took snaps of the images. I really liked the way the images were displayed, it looked well thought out and the frames suited the images well. I also like that this is a small gallery space, I know that there is at least one local to me in St Albans I may consider contacting them to arrange an exhibition of my own work.
Over all I enjoyed my visit to Brighton, It is really valuable to see exhibitions of this scale and take note how it could impact my own practice. I always enjoy the opportunity to take my own photographs, this time I had decided I would only use a plastic hogla lens for my Canon 650D. I have included a few of my own snaps from the day, we were lucky with beautiful weather on our visit, I am always pleased when the sun is shining as I like to see how the light affects things I am looking at.