Issue 5 — Summer 1995
From the photojournalism of Magnum's David Hurn through to the meditative fine art practices of Thomas Joshua Cooper my own education at times seems to stem from very different agendas. Yet these two photographers and their surrounding colleagues provided an enthusiastic meeting point for those possessed by the need to explore with a camera.
Northern Ireland still lacks this type of educational venue. Third level photographic education remains elusive, at best the individual student can produce photographic images as part of a more general degree within broader Fine Art or Graphic Design disciplines. This does not however provide a high level of critique by students and staff who are also using the camera as an integral part of their practice. The daily routine of making photographic images and subsequent photographic work doesn't seem to happen here within an educational context. The struggle to find, a language, with which to scrutinise the particular exploration of making photographic work, is along with the rest of the 'Inside Information', to be found elsewhere. Without such a breeding ground those interested in pursuing photography to a high level leave to take up places on well established courses in England, Scotland and Wales. While it may suit some to study further afield, it would be nice to have a choice and to see what we could come up with here if given the chance. Without this, the photographic community here seems to be in a precarious position.
— John Duncan