Issue 10 — Winter 1997
'Curiosity is probably what drives me more than anything. Pictures, after curiosity, were something I thought I could try to change things with. I do have an axe to grind that's why I bother to take pictures and to write.' The sentiments of Paul Smith are clearly from the 'socially concerned' school of photography. His images from Guatemala depict a harsh living environment and raise questions with the viewer about what possible appropriate response we can have to them.
Derek Speirs' images form part of a campaign to raise awareness among the 'settled community' about issues of stereotyping and discrimination facing the Travelling community in Northern Ireland. This photographic project will be continued through Belfast Exposed workshops enabling travellers to use darkroom facilities and cameras to produce their own images.
The celebration of difference that informs the Travellers project is cited by New York photographer Bruce Gilden as one of his motivations for making photographs. He talks with Christine Redmond about getting started in photography and his twelve year project in Haiti.
Richard Billinghams Ray's a laugh has just been announced as winner of the 'photography Turner Prize' of £10,000 awarded through the Citibank Private Bank competition. His book reveals intimately the life of his own family. It is reviewed for us by photographer Anthony Haughey whose own work was included with Billinghams in the Barbican's exhibition 'Who's looking at the Family?'.
So Mapplethorpe's work has left the Gallery of Photography onward on its world tour. The photographs of one of the world's most renowned artists, are reviewed for us by Keiran Owens. The exhibition in Dublin did not produce the anticipated moral outcry. But would any gallery have shown it North of the border?
— John Duncan