EXHIBITIONS: 8 Great Exhibitions To See This Spring

Pearsall, Texas 01.2018 © Mark Power / Magnum Photos

Good Morning, America is an ongoing 10-year project by photographer Mark Power, creating a visual narrative of a country in the midst of change. It is a personal and timely exploration of both the American cultural and physical landscape, and the divergence of reality and myth. This exhibition, coinciding with the start of a momentous year in US politics, will look back at a selection of images which have defined and shaped the project so far.

Power is from a generation who grew up in the English suburbs of the 1960s, enchanted by the TV shows which crossed the Atlantic from the US – a form of cultural imperialism – and in particular the allure and myth of the western. When he began photographing in the US, Power subconsciously began searching for this mythical landscape – one which perhaps never existed at all. Combined with Power’s outlook as an outsider  – a foreigner,  travelling to and from the country  –  this photographic survey presents a unique and shifting perspective on this complicated period in America’s history.

The seeds of Power’s ambitious project began in 2012 when he became involved in the ‘Postcards from America’ initiative, but he had larger aspirations for the scope and longevity of his work in the US. Good Morning, America will become a series of five books, the third of which will be published in the autumn of 2020 by GOST Books.

‘This is a condensed edit of what is fast becoming a monumental body of work consisting of several thousand photographs. It is easily the most ambitious project I’ve undertaken (and probably ever will) as I continue to make several visits to America each year. It was never my initial intention, but slowly and inexorably I’m collecting pictures from all 50 States (I’ve just passed 40) and this is now dictating where I travel to next. And while the search for an ultimately fictitious America – born in the mind of an impressionable child during the 60s –  continues to underpin the work, the project has naturally shifted as I become more familiar with my subject(s). But that said, I continue to avidly retain my position as someone from somewhere else.

While the project would seem to echo countless other American road trips, these pictures are in fact made during long walks through a series of towns and cities, which allows quieter, perhaps more contemplative pictures to emerge. I’m attempting to construct a complex narrative, but I don’t think of myself as a storyteller. I see a multitude of subjects as interconnected, each affecting and informing the other. This exhibition, like the books, is a work-in-progress; I have a sense that I’m building an enormous jigsaw puzzle but with little idea what the final, completed picture will be.’ – Mark Power

Magnum Print Room, London, 63 Gee St, London EC1V 3RS

8 January – 3 April 2020


Girl holding kitten, London 1960 © Bruce Davidson / Magnum Photos courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery / Huxley Parlour Gallery

Bruce Davidson: A United Kingdom

Photographs of the British Isles in the 1960s, some rarely seen, by American photographer Bruce Davidson, will go on display in his first solo UK exhibition in nearly 10 years.

Davidson travelled to the UK in the autumn of 1960, on commission for The Queen magazine. He was given free rein to create his own personal portrait of the UK and toured for over a two-month period, spending a number of weeks in London before visiting the South Coast and then heading north to Scotland. He found a country that, in parts, appeared untouched since the 1930s, and a society that was driven by difference whilst still emerging from post-war traumas and years of austerity. Davidson focused his essay on the extremes of city and country life, and on the shifting social attitudes to class and custom. He was particularly drawn to documenting a new brand of teenager emerging in London, representing a new era and with it, a growing disparity between youth and age. The photographs were published on 12 April 1961 under the title ‘Seeing Ourselves as an American Sees Us: A Picture Essay on Britain’.

‘It all had a kind of mood… this was the last remnant of an England that was vanishing into other things like The Beatles or modernisation of some kind.’

Also on display are works from a further photo essay made by Davidson in Wales in the mid-1960s. Whilst serving in the US military Davidson had asked a Welsh sergeant where he would send his worst enemy, and the man replied ‘Cwmcarm.’ In 1965, when he was on assignment to photograph Caernarfon Castle, Davidson felt compelled to visit Cwmcarm. Now known for its extensive forests and greenery, the mining town in the Ebbw valley in South Wales had a reputation for social deprivation, and for the scars left on the landscape by years of heavy industry. This reputation was countered by Davidson’s photographs that focussed on the communities – the mining families and the children at play – which sought to convey hope amongst the hardships.

The photographs in this exhibition, some widely seen and others lesser-known, reveal a photographer attuned to traditions and social cues, perhaps overlooked by the British themselves. With his perspective as an outsider, he looked to formal dress rituals and idiosyncratic customs, also capturing a sense of British stoicism and sense of humour. Collectively these photographs reveal the complexities of both the people and the country he encountered.

Bruce Davidson was born in 1933 in Illinois. He studied at Rochester Institute of Technology and Yale University. A member of Magnum Photos since 1958, he is known for photo essays that document subcultures or those on the margins of society. Davidson has been the recipient of numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1962. His work has been exhibited at MoMA, and the International Centre for Photography, New York and is held in many major public and private art collections including Tate Gallery, London.

Huxley-Parlour Gallery, 3-5 Swallow Street, London, W1B 4DE

17 January – 14 March 2020


Steve McQueen Year 3 at Tate Britain © Tate

Steve McQueen: Year 3

Explored through the vehicle of the traditional school class photograph, this vast new artwork is one of the most ambitious portraits of children ever undertaken in the UK. It offers us a glimpse of the capital’s future, a hopeful portrait of a generation to come.

Steve McQueen invited every Year 3 pupil in London to have their photograph taken by a team of specially trained Tate photographers. They included children from state primaries, independent schools, faith schools, special schools, pupil referral units and home-educated pupils. These class photos are brought together into a single large-scale installation, capturing tens of thousands of Year 3 pupils in a milestone year in their development.

Running in parallel to the exhibition at Tate Britain, Artangel is staging an outdoor exhibition spanning London’s 33 boroughs, giving the public a glimpse of the future of their city.

Over the months ahead, pupils featured in the exhibition will be visiting Tate Britain with their schools. As part of this learning experience, pupils will see their photograph up close in dedicated learning spaces around the gallery and take part in activities that explore the exhibition themes. At the end of the exhibition each picture will be returned to the school where the photograph was taken.

Tate Britain, Millbank, London SW1P 4RG

12 November 2019 – 3 May 2020


Documentation of the making of Assisted Self-Portrait of Ben Evans from Assembly by Anthony Luvera © Anthony Luvera

Anthony Luvera: Taking Place

Homelessness in the United Kingdom is on the rise. At the start of 2020 at least one out of every 200 people is living without permanent or safe accommodation. At the same time, 91% of local authorities cannot answer basic questions about homelessness in their communities. Clearly, with such staggering figures, we face a major national crisis.

Anthony Luvera: Taking Place, a new exhibition curated by Futurecity, uncovers the shocking and poignant challenge faced by those experiencing homelessness and asks audiences to consider the narratives and dimensions that can be shared through a collaborative approach to different creative mediums, radically refocusing centres of power. This exhibition presents Assembly (2013 – 2014) and Frequently Asked Questions (2014 – ongoing).

Frequently Asked Questions demonstrates the true scale of the homelessness crisis by navigating bureaucratic and depersonalising centres of authority through a striking wall installation. Stemming from research with Gerald Mclaverty, conducted over the past five years, it presents responses from 110 local authorities across the UK on the services available for people experiencing homelessness, based on questions arising from Gerald’s own experience, such as “where can I go for something to eat?”, “where can I find shelter from when it is raining or snowing?” or “where can I sleep during the night that is safe?” 41 of the councils did not reply at all. With the introduction of the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017, Councils are now legally bound by new duties in relation to homeless individuals and these findings put their performance in relation to the Act under the microscope.

‘The range of responses to these questions from across the country is, quite frankly, alarming to me. Most of the replies were automated emails signposting the reader towards websites and other general resources,’ Anthony Luvera said.

In Brighton in 2013, Luvera invited individuals associated with the area’s First Base Day Centre and the Phase One Project to create photographs and sound recordings of the places, people and events that captivated them. Eventually, some of those participants worked with Luvera on the development of Assisted Self-Portraits in which they co-created their self-representations as part of Assembly. The photographs that resulted are co-sited, framed and edited with the careful guidance of their protagonists, upending the traditional photography process, and empowering the portraitist themselves. Viewers are invited to listen to accompanying sound recordings of participants in the editing room with Luvera on their mobile devices.

Anthony Luvera has collaborated with people who have experienced homelessness in cities and towns across the UK for over fifteen years. He has worked with hundreds of people, and through this process collated thousands of photographs, videos, sound recordings, and texts, created with or by participants. These works express the points of view of individuals to tell stories about their experiences and the systems and services that shape their everyday lives.

Foyles, 5th Floor, 107 Charing Cross Rd, London, WC2H 0EB

11 January – 29 February 2020


Tim Walker Exhibition, 15th September 2019 © Tim Walker / V&A

Tim Walker: Wonderful Things

Tim Walker is one of the most well-known British fashion photographers of our time, but this exhibition is so much more than fashion photography. It is like walking into Walker’s mind and exploring where he finds inspiration, how he develops ideas, creates photography sets and takes the final images.

For this exhibition Walker has created 10 new photoshoots which are a contemporary response to the V&A collection. He spent time in the object stores and conservation studios, meeting many of the museum’s curators, conservators and technicians. He has chosen a variety of objects ranging from stain glass windows to a jewelled snuffbox to create this new series of images. The objects that he drew inspiration from are displayed alongside the photographs. His inspiration does not only come from the physical object but also his own emotional response to it.

The exhibition is an immersive experience from as soon as you walk in. You are gently led deeper into multiple fantasy worlds. This exhibition stays with you like a dream.

V&A, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2RL

21 September 2019 – 8 March 2020


© Arpita Shah

Arpita Shah: Nalini

Arpita Shah is a photographer and filmmaker who explores the intersections of culture identity and heritage. She grew up between India, Ireland and Middle East and finally settled in the U.K. Her work often draws on these experiences of changing cultures and the feeling of being culturally displaced.

Nalini, is a long-term project which takes place across India, Kenya and the UK. It is a very personal journey for Shah following the lives of her Grandmother, mother and herself to explore how migration, memory and loss connects them.

The exhibition includes photographs which Shah has taken herself as well as family photographs, found objects and installations. Her own photographs show her grandmother’s and mother’s bodies as well as objects and landscapes that are sentimental to the women in her family. The photographs are beautiful and calm, Shah connects the colours and tones of the people and clothes with the backgrounds and nature around them. The portraits often do not show the faces which allows the viewer to connect with their own experiences of their family.

“An image can be endlessly layered with meaning, the sitter’s story, the photographer’s story, the viewer’s own story. Some images can be so deeply personally and autobiographical, yet at the same time be incredibly universal. All of this in just one single frame.” Arpita Shah

Impressions Gallery, Centenary Square, Bradford, BD1 1SD

17 January – 28 March 2020


© Jayne Lloyd / Shutter Hub

Postcards from Great Britain                 

Postcards from Great Britain is the first of a multiple exhibition project run by Shutter Hub. The project invites photographers to share their vision of British culture. This is an important time for Great Britain as politicians seek to define the borders and understand what leavening the European Union means, this project will give a visual representation of how the public view their Great Britain.

This exhibition is made up of hundreds of postcard size images from various different photographers. The photographs cross all genres and were all taken between January 2016 and December 2020. The exhibition is displayed in a Hotel Lion d’Or, Haarlem, the Netherlands, hotels are often where people wrote post cards home to loved ones. This juxtaposition between the Postcards of Great Britain in a hotel in the Netherlands allows the viewer time to reflect on changes to Europe and reminds them that Brexit will affect Europe’s identity as well as Great Britain’s.

Shutter Hub aims to show as many images as possible, so this is your only chance to see this selection of images together. All of the images submitted will be part of catalogue that will be held in libraries and achieves. For more information on the project and to enter: https://shutterhub.org.uk/postcards-from-great-britain/

Hotel Lion d’Or, Krisweg 34-36, 2011 LC Haarlem, The Netherlands

05 March 2020 – 02 April 2020