Brighton Photo Biennial 2014

Communities, Collectives and Collaboration is the theme for the sixth edition of Brighton Photo Biennial, and with so much to see this year, a single visit won’t seem like enough time to take it all in. So here are just a few highlights, including a show at the soon to be demolished Circus Street Market exploring the resurgence of photography collectives.

Communities, Collectives and Collaboration is the theme for the sixth edition of Brighton Photo Biennial, and with so much to see this year, a single visit won’t seem like enough time to take it all in. So here are just a few highlights, including a show at the soon to be demolished Circus Street Market exploring the resurgence of photography collectives.

(Pictured above: Image by Jack Simon, from Burn My Eye Collective)

From the series Parana River: A Silent Death by Toni Arau (Ruido Photo)

From the series La Sala Negra, by Pau Coll and Edu Ponce (Ruido Photo)

Barcelona-based Ruido Photo, who work across Spanish speaking countries, present two series of dark, documentary work. Sala Negra looks at the pandemic levels of violence in Central America; and Parana River: A Silent Death, explores how the encroachment of large companies and pollution is effecting the disappearing communities around South America’s second largest body of water.

Falling Angel by Zisis Kardianos (Burn My Eye)

Frédéric le Mauff (Burn My Eye)

Burn My Eye, made up of 14 members across three continents, was formed in 2011, through ‘the Hardcore Street Photography group’, an online Flickr community. They are exhibiting a selection street photography from various members, who share a passion for straight and candid shots but with each artist being distinct in subject and style.

From I Reminisce and Cry for Life, by Agnieszka Rayss (Sputnik Photos)

From The Winners, by Rafal Milach (Sputnik Photos)

Primaveral Forest by Jan Brykczynski (Sputnik Photos)

Sputnik Photosfounded in 2009 by nine documentary photographers, are based across Eastern Europe. Although working geographically separately, they are united by a desire to share their experiences of post-Soviet transformation, and present Stand By, which documents life and communities in Belarus – ‘the last dictatorship in Europe’.

Red Shoes, from the Still Here series, by Lydia Goldblatt (Uncertain States)

From the Realm series, by Carolyn Lefley (Uncertain States)

From the Res Extensa series, by Federica Landl

Uncertain States are also exhibiting, a loose confederacy of 100 writers and artists working through an open submission process. They primarily publish and distribute a free quarterly broadsheet of lens-based art, with the aim of creating a space of shared language and purpose.

Installation shots from The Photocopy Club: A Giant Collective

From A Return to Elsewhere by Kalpesh Lathigra and Thabiso Sekgala

From A Return to Elsewhere by Kalpesh Lathigra and Thabiso Sekgala

Also in this space catch The Photocopy Club: A Giant Collective, with the international exchange of work in partnership with Joberg Photo Umbrella, produced through an open call for people to form collectives and submit work around the theme of communities. And A Return to Elsewhere by Kalpesh Lathigra and Thabiso Sekgala, who work collaboratively to document communities in two locations (Marabastad and Laudium in South Africa, and Brighton).

Demonstration against the Historic Compromise, alliance of the Christian Democracy (DC) and the Italian Communist Party (PCI), Rome, 1970s, by Team Editorial Services/Alinari (Courtesy: The Archive of Modern Conflict)

Other highlights include Amore e Piombo, a collection of press photos by Rome-based agency Team Editorial Services, tracing the politics and celebrity of 1970’s Italy at the Old Reference Library in Brighton Museum; Real Britain 1974, with postcards from the Co-Optic group, including social documentary photography from the likes of Martin Parr and Nick Hedges, at Dorset Place Gallery; Stories Seen Through a Glass Plate with lightboxes around in Lewes, showing images from Edward Reeves, the world’s oldest photo studio; and Simon Faithfull’s boat-sinking project, Reef, at Fabrica.

Girl on a Spacehopper, Sirkka-Liisa-Konttinen, 1971 (Courtesy Amber and L Parker Stephenson)

Enoch Powell Electioneering, by Paul Hill, 1970 (from Real Britain 1974)

Many of the other archival and contemporary exhibitions are taking place in public spaces across East Sussex, plus there’s Brighton Photo Fringe, and an extensive events programme of talks and workshops running alongside.

Brighton Photo Biennial runs until 2 November. For more info visit bpb.org.uk and photoworks.org.uk

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