TSP Incubator Series #1: Making Something Happen

Talk See Photography is delighted to present the first of our Incubator Series, which aims to provide a platform for emerging critics, theorists and makers to engage the public with ideas and issues surrounding photography and contemporary photographic practice.

Our first event in this series; Making Something Happen, brings together Dr. Benjamin Greenman and John Farrell. They will be discussing the role of performativity inherent within the work of photographic artist Richard Learoyd (b. 1966 in Lancashire, England) as well as more broadly within contemporary photographic practice and how we as an audience engage with that transformative process.

Richard Learoyd graduated from Glasgow School of Art’s Fine Art Photography department in 1990. He works with a room sized camera, a version of a camera obscura within his studio and uses large sheets of a now discontinued photographic material called Cibachrome; 0f which he has the world’s remaining stock, which is mounts to the wall and exposed to light from his camera to make his photographs. Each photograph is a unique edition of one, there is no negative or print such as is the case with conventional picture making. Rather Learoyd describes his photographs as ‘hard won’, insisting there are ‘no happy accidents.’

His work is included in the collections of The Getty, Tate, Victoria & Albert Museum,  Centre Pompidou, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Nelson-Atkins Museum, National Gallery of Canada, and Yale University Art Gallery, among others. In the autumn of 2015 Aperture released Richard Learoyd: Day for Night, a comprehensive book of color portraits and studio work and concurrently, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London is hosting Dark Mirror, an exhibition of his large-scale portrait and still-life photographs until February 14th. The J. Paul Getty Museum will present a solo exhibition of Learoyd’s work in later this year.

Dr. Greenman teaches at Glasgow School of Art within the Forum for Critical Enquiry at undergraduate and postgraduate level. His research areas include 20th and 21st Century North American and European art as well as the history and theory of photography and photographic practice.

John Farrell is a practicing photographic artist based in Glasgow. Farrell has a strong interest in the performative space of photographs and has written several papers on this subject.

Image: James back 2, 2011, Camera Obscura Ilfochrome Photograph, © Richard Learoyd