I was thrilled to be invited to showcase my portrait of a boy swimming in a river near Chernobyl, Ukraine, at this year’s Portrait Salon galler(ies). The Portrait Salon exhibition toured the UK throughout 2014 and 2015 and my portrait was exhibited in London, Edinburgh, Bradford, North Wales and Birmingham.
My photo was in great company and it was wonderful to see such an array of beautiful and thought provoking portraits in one place. The exhibition in Birmingham was at the Parkside Gallery at Birmingham City University.
(You can see the whole ‘War without War’ Chernobyl series here)
Coincidentally, among the many striking photographs exhibited at Portrait Salon, was an image by Phil Le Gal. I had to good fortune to meet Phil in the Calais refugee camp recently as he worked on his ongoing project ‘The New Continent‘ (which is well worth following).
Here is Phil’s excellent portrait that was also in the Portrait Salon Exhibition. The image is part of his series ‘Days of Mercy‘ which “attempts to decode the practice of ancient religious rituals deeply buried in the heart of Brittany“. Wonderful stuff.
I have been to many exhibitions before, but it was really exciting to see my own image among such a wonderful group of photographs!
I’m really thrilled to have one of photographs from my Chernobyl research featured in this years’ Portrait Salon exhibition – a real honour to have my photo in the company of such a talented group of photographers.
Its a great feeling that an image I made while standing waste deep in a river in the nuclear landscape of Chernobyl in Ukraine will be seen by people in galleries in the UK. Photography and PhD research are both quite isolating adventures at times, so its nice to have the opportunity to shed light on a small aspect of my research. I am looking forward to seeing the show myself when it comes to Birmingham next July.
The annual Portrait Salon exhibition was created in 2011 by Carole Evans and James O Jenkins and is a response to the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize. It showcases photographs rejected from this prestigious competition. (Read a review of this year’s Taylor Wessing Prize by Lewis Bush on the Disphotic blog here.)
As described in an article on the British Journal of Photography:
‘The idea [for Portrait Salon] is based on the first Salon des Refusés that was staged by artists who were rejected from the 1863 Paris Salon. However, as Evans and O Jenkins point out, many rejected works went on to gain significant notoriety, a prime example being Édouard Manet’s Déjeuner sur l’herbe. “This goes to show that juried art shows don’t necessarily reflect the views of the public or predict what will become memorable”, the founders comment.’
The Portrait Salon exhibition will run through 2014 – 2015 and will tour gallery spaces in London, Brighton, Bradford, North Wales, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Bristol.
Below are some other photographs from the group exhibition that caught my eye. Check out all the images here.
Photograph of Ian McKellen by Rory Lewis rorylewis.co.uk
I like how this photograph captures that awkward liminality of being a teenager. The look the kid with the red hoodie is giving Sophie is great. By Sophie Gerrard sophiegerrard.com
A striking portrait by Ania Mroczkowska aniamphotography.com
A school boy in a chip shop photographed by Sophie Green. Her other project called ‘I am Sophie Green’ where she photographs other people called ‘Sophie Green’ is worth viewing too. By Sophie Green sophiegreenphotography.com
One of the two portraits that Jack Davidson has in this year’s Portrait Salon exhibition. It reminds me of Spencer Murphy’s photograph that won the Taylor Wessing prize in 2013. By Jack Davidson jackdavison.co.uk
This photo of a breast feeding mother at a bus stop reminded me of renaissance paintings of Modonna and child. By Valentina Schivardi valentinaschivardi.com
I don’t know where this photograph was taken but the wallpaper in the background reminded me of homes in Ukraine. By Jill Wooster jillwooster.com
A portrait of Charlotte Church by Clare Hewitt clarehewitt.co.uk
These are the dates and location of the exhibition: