In my reviews of the graduate smorgasbord that is Free Range, I remarked how photography had trumped fine art this year. And now we have another photography graduate exhibition, this time by Bournemouth university at the other graduate venue du jour – the Bargehouse behind the Oxo Tower.
Though it’s a much smaller venue it also uses the old warehouse effect to give a raw and weathered venue, which is much more suitable for graduate art than the traditional white cube of a gallery.
This is a solid exhibition with yet another strong showing for this year’s crop of photography graduates, four of them caught my eye and they are listed below:
Close-up insect photographs are more likely to be seen in the Wellcome image awards but Clayton doesn’t give us the obviously recognisable body part rather focussing on the more obscure views of insect thus giving his work an abstract feel
There’s something mystical of what appears to be a glowing organic mass on a peaked bedsheet. This otherworldly juxtaposition makes this photograph stand out.
This may seem like a stock corporate photograph but there’s a wonderful loneliness in the one employee still visible in the lobby at night. Despite the welcoming orange of the walls behind her, it’s a clear symbol of our times – the late night worker finally finishing up for the day.
Night time photography is a saturated genre but what I liked about Mahdavi’s work is that it’s more about what we can’t see. Today’s cities and light pollution mean we are rarely exposed to such pitch black and there’s something comforting about these images even though you would expect them to be foreboding.
TURF is on for the weekend of 18-20 July at Oxo Tower, Bargehouse