PhotoLondon – Preview Evening – Home: Magnum

Magnum sent an invite to the Preview Evening for the Home Exhibition at the Vinyl Factory. The exhibition was created in conjunction with FujiFilm. The project behind the exhibition had multiple Magnum photographers shoot images on the theme of home during the month of September 2017. The images were all captured using FujiFilm’s medium format camera GFX-50s or the X-T2.

I decided to attend the exhibition as part of my research for the preview evening that I need to arrange for my own exhibition and to get some ideas for framing and hanging options.

When I arrived security were checking names on the guest list and on going into the gallery space it was full of people.

The work was arranged on the exterior was of the gallery plus internal partition walls. The space included a space made to look like the living room of a home. (Reflection: an example of transforming the white cube into a space the resonates with the work being exhibited in the space. This is something I plan to do with my own exhibition by introducing objects that speak to the subject of departure and furniture that we might consider as familiar to the seaside.)

Member of Magnum and FujiFilm gave a short talk to the guests about the project each talk lasted about 5 minutes. Mark Power was the last person to speak and he explained the concept behind his images on the subject of Home that related to the period just before his daughter Chilli left for university recording images of her in the days before Mark took her and her possessions to university. (Reflection: This is a remind that for a house to become a home it is about the relationship between place and people and the emotions that we attach to that place and time. This is similar to the emotional attachment I have for my home in Essex but also for place in other European countries such as the Netherlands where I worked for 5 years.)

Reflection: I need to consider providing a short talk on my work on the preview evening. Based on Mark’s talk it is appropriate to give the audience additional insight into the work on display plus a chance to thank people who contributed to the project.

Reviewing the work of the different Magnum photographers each it was clear that when curating the work there was not attempt made to apply a common layout or framing to the images. Though with the work of each photographer framing was consistent even though some photographers decided to combine different size frames into their specific space. (Reflection: I have decided to apply a single mounting approach to my work with the exception of the pieces that will be present as moving images or art installations. I did not identify any specific hangs that would prompt me to deviate from my current hanging strategy of a linear hanging interjected by portrait images.)

I was a surprise to discover that Magnum and FujiFilm presented each of the preview evening visitors with a copy of a book created from the work being exhibited. The book an enduring artefact that we can use to reflect on the exhibition.

The installation of the living room within the gallery space provided the reader with a clear visual clue that the subject of the exhibition was home as the living room is at the heart of many homes. The photographic work reminds us of the fact that home can have many different interpretations though for me home is a place that I identify with in my case I feel I am returning home whenever I see the signs that show I have crossed the county border into Essex.

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