Issue 73 — Winter 2012
For some time we have been reporting the effects of the recession and funding cuts on photography organisations. Added to the merging of photography remits with those of art galleries and the movement of various photography functions to the web, it wouldn’t be surprising if photography-specific organisations ceased to exist altogether. And yet... precisely the opposite has taken place. In the last five years new publications, galleries and festivals, all dedicated to photography, have sprung up. And that’s not all, there are new bookshops for photobooks, new photo collectives, new community photography initiatives.
This issue is about these new organisations. What motivates them? How are they different from the photography galleries that started in the 1970s? How do they survive? It is an unstable environment (at least two galleries have closed since this issue was commissioned) but there are still as many new arrivals as departures (notably, in the coming months, the Media Space and the Cardiff International Festival of Photography). So, despite the gloomy economic climate it seems like a good time to sample the New Wave.
The camera / object / image relationship is a subject that Steven Pippin has explored in a number of photographic works. In his latest piece non event he continues to do so, this time by firing a gun directly at the camera. The resulting images show a bullet as it passes through the camera along with its impact on the film. He discusses this work and his early experiences of grappling with the rigmarole of photography.
Siún Hanrahan discusses the work of Jason Dunne who is a recent graduate from The MFA at Kunsthøgskolen in Bergen, Norway. Rather than the ‘cool staging’ employed by many contemporary photographers Dunne employs a strategy of exaggeration and distortion that allows for anarchic commentary on society and politics. He directs this towards Ireland’s economic woes.
Owen Hatherley, known for his books of architectural criticism, writes about the work of Richard Gilligan, a recent MFA graduate from the University of Ulster. Gilligan searches out the locations favoured by skateboarders and photographs their ad hoc creations that transform their environment and allow them to repurpose other people’s wasteland.
— The Editors