Below is a date ordered list of major UK photography exhibitions and talks.

Galleries, organisations or members who wish to add an event, please email:  chris@designforte.co.uk


Title: IAN BEESLEY & IAN McMILLAN - BIG BIG CAMERA
Venue:  National Coal Mining Museum, Caphouse Colliery, New Road, Overton, Wakefield WF4 4RH
Dates: Until 28 February 2018
Websitewww.ncm.org.uk

An exhibition featuring large-scale prints and negatives taken by acclaimed photographer Ian Beesley as part of his Artist in Residency at Gallery Oldham. All of the photographs were taken on a huge industrial process camera which was made by Hunter Penrose in the 19th century.

Including new photographs taken at the Museum as well as a selection of poems by Barnsley Bard Ian McMillan, the Big Big Camera will make you think again about the process of photography.

Saddleworth photographer Beesley has brought a giant piece of manufacturing heritage back into use after finding it in the stores at Gallery Oldham. Within seconds of seeing the wooden camera he made a snap decision to restore it and get it back in working order.

The work involved specialist restoration of the lens as well as a good deal of cleaning. Most importantly Ian had to meet the challenge of using a camera that was designed for huge negatives 20 inches square. His solution was to create a grid which could take smaller negatives resulting in images made up of 20 separate prints.

The next step was to take the camera out on the road. A transit van was required to transport it and with a little modification this also doubled as a darkroom enabling the slides to be reloaded out in the field. 

Ian said: “Wherever we took this camera people were fascinated by its scale and by the effort involved in making just one image. It has been great fun and a real challenge getting this far and I’m hoping to produce a full scale exhibition with this camera eventually.”

"This project explores and contemporises some aspects of photography that are now lost in the digital age, from the sheer physicality of the equipment, to the delicate relationship with light and the uncertainty of a successful creation of a unique photographic image, this is photography in its purest but most demanding form."

Meet photographer Ian Beesley and his big big camera on loan from Gallery Oldham (selected dates only).

FREE entry.


Title: VALDA BAILEY – The Sun Beyond the Shadow
Venue:  MMX Gallery, 448 New Cross Road, London SE14 6TY
Dates: Until 10 March 2018
Website: www.mmxgallery.com

MMX Gallery is delighted to present The Sun Beyond the Shadow, a solo show by British artist and photographer Valda Bailey. Her work is greatly informed by her background in painting and influences come as much from artists as photographers. Her objective is less about portraying a literal representation, but rather conveying feelings evoked by the landscape and she achieves this using multiple exposures, and intentional camera movement. Valda incorporates precious metals such as gold and silver as well as copper leaf into the finished print to encapsulate some of the elements she wants to express.


Title: MAHTAB HUSSAIN - YOU GET ME?
Venue:  Impressions Gallery, Centenary Square, Bradford BD1 1SD
Dates: Until 24 March 2018
Websitewww.impressions-gallery.com

Mahtab Hussain’s photographs explore the critical question of identity among young working-class British Asian men and boys. This is the first time that this acclaimed exhibition from Autograph ABP has been seen outside London.


Title: TOM WOOD – The Pier Head 1978-2002
Venue: Open Eye Gallery, 19 Mann Island, Liverpool L3 1BP
Dates: Until 25 March 2018
Website: www.openeye.org.uk

The Mersey Ferries operate between Liverpool and the Wirral peninsula. Photographer Tom Wood lived in New Brighton for 25 years, and for most days throughout the 70s and 80s he crossed the river. Whilst waiting for the ferry to arrive or crossing the river, he took photographs.

These images, selected from 1000s of rolls of film, form The Pier Head – Tom Wood. Most of the images are being shown in the UK for the first time.

A new book, Termini, will launch with the exhibition, featuring a range of images from the show, together with specially written text by poet and writer Paul Farley. Two of Wood’s previous books – Photie Man and Looking for Love, are in included in Source Photographic Review’s list of The Greatest 150 Photo Books of All Time.

The work in The Pier Head – Tom Wood was made at a time when being casually photographed was far less common than now. The 90 plus images on display show commuters, families, friends, the old and the young making the everyday journey across the river, over a kilometre from shore to shore.

The Pier HeadTom Wood is accompanied by a project called Ferry Folk, from artist and producer Liz Wewiora.


Title: STEPHEN J. MORGAN - 'LADYWOOD FENIAN'
Venue:  Argentea Gallery, 28 St Paul’s Square, Birmingham B3 1RB
Dates: Until 24 March 2018
Website: www.argenteagallery.com

Argentea Gallery is delighted to invite you to the opening of ‘Ladywood Fenian’, a solo exhibition featuring artist Stephen J. Morgan. As a second generation Irish child growing up in Birmingham, it navigates Morgan’s childhood portraying places and objects in a haunting depiction of the neighbourhood he grew up in.

Featuring a selection of photographs from three of Morgan’s well established series including: I Was Born an English Catholic, Ladywood Fenian, and The Other Side of Everything, his work is striking in its ability to extract a rare beauty from the unexceptional, allowing an unprecedented intimacy and insight into his relationship with his past.


Title: LUCY SAGGERS - OF LIFE AND LAND
Venue: Ryedale Folk Museum, Hutton-le-Hole, North Yorkshire
Dates: Until 25 March 2018
Website: www.ryedalefolkmuseum.co.uk

Of Life and Land is a curated collection of black and white photographs by Lucy Saggers. Evoking the essence of relationships and community, the exhibition shows works from Lucy’s ongoing documentary project set in the village of Ampleforth, on the southern edge of the North York Moors National Park.

Taken over the last four years, Lucy says her work “seeks to shine a light on the sense of continuity that still exists in rural communities, and the way a piece of country is stitched into people’s lives despite today’s fast-changing times.”

Lucy’s ‘everyday’ scenes captured over the last four years were described by LensCulture magazine as “visually and thematically beautiful” and as “possessing such consciousness for texture, generosity of spirit, grasping always for the light and for humility” by the Yorkshire Art Journal.


Title: ANDREAS GURSKY
Venue: Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre, London SE1 8XX
Dates: Until 22 April 2018
Website: www.southbankcentre.co.uk

Hayward Gallery reopens in January 2018 with the first major UK retrospective of the work of acclaimed German photographer Andreas Gursky.

Gursky, known for his large-scale, often spectacular pictures that portray emblematic sites and scenes of the global economy and contemporary life, is widely regarded as one of the most significant photographers of our time.

Driven by an interest and insight into "the way that the world is constituted", as well as what he describes as "the pure joy of seeing", Gursky makes photographs that are not just depictions of places or situations, but reflections on the nature of image-making and the limits of human perception. Often taken from a high vantage point, these images make use of a ‘democratic’ perspective that dispenses with formal hierarchies and gives equal importance to all elements of his highly detailed scenes.

This exhibition features around 60 of the artist’s ground-breaking photographs, from the early 1980s through to his most recent work, including Paris, Montparnasse (1993) – one of Gurksy’s most well-known images – and Rhine II (1999/2015), which borrows from and builds on the tradition of German Romanticism to offer a subtly altered version of this iconic river.


Title: NIALL McDIARMID - TOWN TO TOWN
Venue:  Martin Parr Foundation, 316 Paintworks, Arnos Vale, Bristol BS4 3AR
Dates: Until 12 May 2018
Websitewww.martinparrfoundation.org

In 2011 Niall McDiarmid began what would turn out to be an extensive series of portraits that would take him across the whole of Britain. From Dingwall in the Highlands of Scotland all the way south to Bodmin in Cornwall, he has shot over 2000 portraits in more than 200 towns over the course of seven years.

“Initially I began taking portraits on the streets near to where I live in south London, building a small series that would show the diversity of the community I live in,” he explains. However, within weeks he had branched out to cover the whole of the capital and then within months to cover the whole of Britain.

Niall has chosen to photograph the characters he meets in a distinctive style: often they are dressed in bold colours and patterns and shot against correspondingly colourful backgrounds. “Through this series, my aim is show Britain as a diverse and multicultural society at a time of huge change,” he says.

The Town To Town exhibition at the Martin Parr Foundation will feature more than 70 portraits from across Britain and will open on 31st January 2018. Niall is from Aberfeldy in Perthshire, now living and working in London. Admission free.

Andreas Gursky marks the beginning of the Hayward Gallery’s 50th anniversary year and is the first exhibition to take place in the gallery following its two year refurbishment. For the first time since the Hayward’s original opening, the gallery’s pyramid roof lights will allow natural light into the spaces below.


Title: DEUTSCHE BORSE PHOTOGRAPHY FOUNDATION PRIZE 2018
Venue:  The Photographers Gallery, 16-18 Ramillies St, London W1F 7LW
Dates: Until 3 June 2018
Website: www.thephotographersgallery.org.uk

The four artists shortlisted for the 21st edition of the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize are Mathieu Asselin, Rafal Milach, Batia Suter and Luke Willis Thompson. The winner will be announced at a special award ceremony in May 2018 at The Photographers' Gallery in London. 


Title: SIMON ROBERTS – Merrie Albion
Venue:  Flowers Gallery, 82 Kingsland Road, London E2 8DP
Dates: Until 10 October 2018
Website: www.flowersgallery.com

For over a decade, Simon Roberts has photographed events and places across Britain that have drawn people together in public, reflecting on the nature of our shared histories and communal experiences.

Merrie Albion – Landscape Studies of a Small Island brings together iconic images and many previously unpublished photographs, recording social practices and customs linked to the British landscape, as well as some of the economic and political theatre that has helped define recent history.

The work in the exhibition ranges across various projects, both commissioned and independently produced over the last ten years, from single photographs made around the time of Roberts’s major photographic project We English, to his subsequent work as the official artist of the General Election of 2010, and his series National Property: The Picturesque Imperfect.

While Roberts’s interests have often gravitated towards evolving patterns of leisure, and the complex relationship between history, place and culture, he has also photographed events that have a more immediate, topical significance in Britain’s recent past, and which collectively form a detached visual chronicle of the times in which we live.


OPENING SOON


Title: VICTORIAN GIANTS – THE BIRTH OF ART PHOTOGRAPHY
Venue:  National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place, London WC2H OHE
Dates: 1 March to 20 May 2018
Website: www.npg.org.uk

This major new exhibition brings together, for the first time, the works of four of the most celebrated figures in art photography, Lewis Carroll (1832–98), Julia Margaret Cameron (1815–79), Oscar Rejlander (1813–75) and Clementina Hawarden (1822-65). These four artists would come to embody the very best in photography of the Victorian era. Their experimental approach to picture-making and radical attitudes towards photography have informed artistic practice ever since.

Featuring striking portraits of sitters such as Charles Darwin, Alice Liddell, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Thomas Carlyle, George Frederick Watts, Ellen Terry and Alfred, Lord Tennyson.


Title: THE PHOTOGRAPHY SHOW
Venue:  The NEC, Birmingham
Dates: 17 to 20 March 2018
Website: www.photographyshow.com

The Photography Show returns to the NEC for its fifth year, between 17-20 March 2018. Full to the brim with everything a passionate photography enthusiast or a well-seasoned professional photographer could possibly dream of; including the latest technology from all the leading brands, demos of the latest kit, conference sessions and a complete range of talks and seminars guaranteed to meet your needs, whatever your level. 

This year's Super Stage line-up includes those at the very top of their game across fashion, documentary and photojournalism, music, weddings, wildlife and landscape, and surrealism. Globally renowned, this collection of photographers will take to the stage to talk about their experiences, how they've got to where they are now and how they've captured their most iconic images. Main Stage speakers include: Ami Vitale, Art Wolfe, Erik Johnansson, Brent Stirton, Daniel Berehukak, Jasmine Star, Gered Mankowitz, Bruce Davidson, Zed Nelson & Miles Aldridge. See website for additional speakers.


Title: JERWOOD / PHOTOWORKS AWARDS - Alejandra Carles-Tolra, Sam Laughlin and Lua Ribeira
Venue:  Impressions Gallery, Centenary Square, Bradford BD1 1SD
Dates: 6 April to 23 June 2018
Websitewww.impressions-gallery.com

The Jerwood / Photoworks Awards are a collaboration between Jerwood Charitable Foundation and Photoworks, supported by Arts Council England and Official Print Partner, Spectrum Photographic. Following a national open call, the three Awardees were selected from over 350 applicants. the Awardees benefitted from a year’s mentoring from internationally-renowned specialists including photographer Mitch Epstein, publisher Michael Mack, and gallerist Maureen Paley, as well as financial support to make new work.

Alejandra Carles-Tolra has photographed a community of ‘Janeites’ who celebrate Jane Austen’s work, dressing up in Regency period clothing and performing activities to keep the novelist’s words alive. Carles-Tolra says, "I am interested in challenging stereotypes and getting a better understanding of who these people are. What drives someone to dress up as if they were in the nineteenth century?" The resulting series, Where We Belong, explores the relationships between individual and group identity, as well as themes of femininity and escapism. 

Sam Laughlin’s A Certain Movement focuses on patterns of animal behaviour and intricate natural processes occurring all around us. He says, "As a keen walker and bird-watcher, I have always been fascinated by the natural world and its systems". Laughlin’s highly detailed observations of nests and ponds, trees and cliffs, reveal the traces of wildlife in the landscape, and a world that is increasingly marginalised by human activities. 

Lua Ribeira’s Subida al Cielo (Ascent into Heaven) is a personal vision built on the fear of dying. Her staged photographs feature participants enacting imaginary and intriguing scenarios in gardens and graveyards. Ribeira’s work is motivated by a desire to escape from reality and a longing for mythological significance in contemporary life. She says, "I’m interested in classical mythology and religious symbols of mortality, and Subida al Cielo offers an allegorical exploration of the inevitable decay of the human body."


Title: PHOTO LONDON
Venue:  Somerset House, Strand, London
Dates: 17 to 20 May 2018
Website: www.photolondon.org

Now in its third edition, Photo London has established itself as a world-class photography fair and as a catalyst for London’s dynamic photography community. [ See official website for full lineup of Galleries and Speakers ]


Title: LUCY SAGGERS - OF LIFE AND LAND
Venue: The Witham, Barnard Castle, County Durham
Dates: 5 July to 4 August 2018
Website: www.thewitham.org.uk

Of Life and Land is a curated collection of black and white photographs by Lucy Saggers. Evoking the essence of relationships and community, the exhibition shows works from Lucy’s ongoing documentary project set in the village of Ampleforth, on the southern edge of the North York Moors National Park.

Taken over the last four years, Lucy says her work “seeks to shine a light on the sense of continuity that still exists in rural communities, and the way a piece of country is stitched into people’s lives despite today’s fast-changing times.”

Lucy’s ‘everyday’ scenes captured over the last four years were described by LensCulture magazine as “visually and thematically beautiful” and as “possessing such consciousness for texture, generosity of spirit, grasping always for the light and for humility” by the Yorkshire Art Journal.


Title: THE EYE FESTIVAL
Venue:  Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Aberystwyth University, Penglais Campus, Aberystwyth SY23 3DE
Dates: 5 to 7 October 2018
Website: www.theeyefestival.co

The idea for The Eye Festival came to Welsh photojournalist Glenn Edwards while covering The International Ceramics Festival, a bienial event at Aberystwyth Arts Centre.

Our 2018 speaker programme over the Saturday and Sunday has been the big talking point amongst attendees of past EYE Festivals and we think we've risen to the challenge again. Our roster includes the much respected UK street portrait photographer Niall McDiarmid (now showing at The Martin Parr Foundation in Bristol), award-winning photojournalists Danilo Balduci and Kate Holt, wet-plate photographer Kazia Wozniak, photo editor Neil Bennet from Australia, and artist/photographer Helen Marshall.

As ever, the friendly atmosphere of our event and venue means there's ample opportunity to meet and chat with our speakers over the Festival weekend.


Title: PHOTO NORTH FESTIVAL ( HARROGATE )
Venue:  Harrogate Convention Centre, Kings Road, Harrogate HG1 5LA
Dates: 9 to 11 November 2018
Website: www.photonorthfestival.co.uk

Peter Dench and Sharon Price ( The Curators ) are delighted to announce the inaugural Photo North Festival, a three-day photographic festival in Harrogate. The event is for the professional photographer, photo-enthusiast, keen amateur and anyone who wishes to engage with the medium.

There will be an exciting array of exhibitions, workshops, portfolio reviews, seminars and book signings from some of the world's most inspiring photographers including Jane Hilton, Tom Stoddart, Peter Dench, Dean Belcher and others to be announced. 

Note: Harrogate Photographic Society will be exhibiting at St Peter's Church in Harrogate town centre. The theme is Yorkshire and will feature landscapes, portraits and images that reflect all aspects of life in Yorkshire. 


OPENING IN 2019...


Title: DON McCULLIN – Retrospective
Venue:  Tate Britain
Dates: To be announced
Website:: www.tate.org.uk

A major exhibition of Don McCullin’s work. [ More information nearer the time ]