1st Outdoor Exhibition

September 2021

BBC Feature

Before I get into the upcoming outdoor exhibition, I’d like to point you to A pandemic constitutional in pictures. It had been a while since I had anything published so I was delighted when Phil Coomes, the Photo Editor at BBC News Online, asked me to write a piece to accompany a selection of my photographs. I think it works very well and I have had an excellent response from many people. Thank you all.

Might I also say that I am much recovered from long-Covid though I do, from time to time, have bad days when energy is low and the lungs struggle. But as time passes these are fewer and further between.

1st Outdoor Exhibition

For some years now I have wanted to exhibit poster prints outside. I have made two of my favourite photographs on Sydenham Bridge, right around the corner from where I live.

Both photographs © Paul Treacy / Millennium Images

This bridge has brick walls with recessed spaces.

I have wanted to put pictures in them for ages. I considered the guerilla art approach but that requires anonymity because if you identify yourself you can get in trouble. As a father I can’t be getting in trouble. Perhaps in later years there’ll be room for that.

For the upcoming local Visual Arts Trail I proposed this idea and though it had enthusiastic support, it was refused, as the bridge has a preservation order on it. However, the excellent brains amongst the arts trail organizers came up with the idea of turning a disused public toilet, just around the corner from the bridge, into an art object. I don’t know if we have permission from the council but we figure if we can do a good job of it, they’ll not be upset. Since they ran out of money to maintain it they’ll likely be pleased that a use has been found for it.

The plan is to repair damage to one of the broken panels and to strip it back and paint it in readiness for an exhibition of my Hinterland work which was all made locally in southeast London. We will begin on Monday next, 9th August.

As much as I would like to have these posters printed commercially, I cannot afford to so I will prepare the materials myself. As I do not have a large format printer I will make up the posters using A4 prints.

Before I can wheat paste them I will need to waterproof them as with inkjet prints the inks will run if I don’t. So I will need to make a gelli plate first using glycerin. Then I can apply a water proofing agent to the plate and quickly apply and remove the print (ink side down) to protect them for pasting to the walls of the loo. This process should also allow them to survive bad weather for a few weeks.

This display will allow members of the community who wouldn’t ordinarily attend art galleries or exhibitions, to potentially enjoy some locally made street photography and perhaps be reminded of places that have since changed.

Prints and books

I have substantially improved my book making techniques in recent weeks making them much more robust so that they can last a long time. I’m sorry if some of the earlier books have become a little flimsy. I did make and sell books as I was developing my skills. I’m a master at it now. I’m ready to pass on my knowledge.

As this exhibition will take quite a lot of my time to prepare I have set up a new donation button so that those of you who can might consider making a contribution.

I have also started making A4 portfolio grade archival prints for the collectors among you. They are £75 each. These are produced here in my studio so they are as good as you can get.

You can find out more here.

If you would like a larger print then I can have those prepared at theprintspace here in London.

I’m delighted to report that the 1st edition of Pandemic Constitutional has sold out. Please let me know if you might be interested in this book as I may do another edition.

I will have to charge more in future for my books as they each take a lot of time to prepare. I will include a signed print. I may also make them in batches before selling them to make the whole process faster and to reduce the stress involved. Or perhaps have a window of time for orders before then fulfilling. If you have any thoughts, ideas or complaints, please get in touch. Or comment below. Or if you may be in need of my photographic services, drop me a line. I’ll consider all assignments and commissions to see if I’m a good match. If not I can try and point you to someone who might be.

Thank you kindly for your continued support. I will post again in a month or so.

Please consider supporting my work. Thank you.