Photo50

Eugénie Shinkle, Ideal City (Somebody Else’s Landscape), 1998. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.

Photo50 is London Art Fair’s annual exhibition of contemporary photography, providing a critical forum for examining some of the most distinguishing elements of current photographic practice. Guest curated each year, it highlights a timely theme in current photography and adds a space and context to the photography presented by galleries at the Fair. 

PHOTO50 2024, Curated by Revolv Collective

Grafting: The Land and the Artist

Revolv Collective presented Grafting: The Land and the Artist at Photo50, London Art Fair, 2024. Centred in expanded photographic practice, the collection of works by early and mid-career artists will explore the subject of labour and its diverse representations within the context of the land. In the exhibition, labour will be contextualised from a variety of positions to question our understanding and engagement with the land as a site of work, resistance, action, co-dependence, regeneration and communion. Echoing the horticultural technique whereby two plants are joined in order to grow together, these artists propose an ethos of entanglement, a space for contemplation and learning about the world, its complex systems and ecologies. The accompanying talks programme, Grafting, expanded the exhibition, highlighting process, materiality, sustainability, pedagogy, as modalities of labour within artistic practices borne through the land.

Selected works included Eugénie Shinkle’s Ideal City (Somebody Else’s Landscape) which rebuilds sections of four paintings by JMW Turner as a way of reflecting on the sense of culture shock and claustrophobia Shinkle experienced upon moving to London from Canada in 1997. The resulting images of London’s streets were used as individual ‘pixels’ to rebuild the enlarged sections of four different c19th landscape paintings by JMW Turner.

The exhibition also included several works by British artist Jackson Whitefield such as Imprint I, which was created by embedding steel structures in the earth, left to be imprinted by the elements over the course of three months where after the objects were removed, etched onto paper and photographed.

Meanwhile Joshua Bilton’s Clay Cast of Two Hands Touching presented an organic clay sculpture housing a direct reproduction of two hands in contact. The photograph of this object adds “a second layer of representation” and “frees it from its original reference” (Rodrigo Orrantia, On Touch (or the impossibility of touch) 2020).

2024 Participating Artists

Alice Cazenave | Edd Carr | Eugénie Shinkle | Hannah Fletcher | Jackson Whitefield | Joshua Bilton | Kiluanji Kia Henda
| MADEYOULOOK  (Molemo Moiloa and Nare Mokgotho) |
Marie Smith | Rahima Gambo | Rowan Lear | Tamsin Green | Victoria Ahrens

More From the Curators

Revolv Collective was delighted to curate Photo50 at the London Art Fair 2024. This was a fantastic opportunity for us to showcase a selection of visionary early and mid-career artists whose practices are centred in expanded photography. Grafting: The Land and the Artist challenged traditional representations of the land, situating it as a site of artistic labour. The exhibition brought together multiple contemporary approaches that, drawing from diverse histories, work practices, and environmental concerns, encouraged us to contemplate our relationship with the land, as well as our inextricable future together.

– Revolv Collective, 2023

 

Revolv Collective is an artist-run organisation based in the UK that promotes the practice, teaching and dissemination of expanded photography. Lina Ivanova and Krasimira Butseva established Revolv in 2017 in Portsmouth, UK, with the ambition to create opportunities for early-career artists. Since then, their numerous projects have fostered creativity and artistic innovation through a collaborative, interdisciplinary and non-hierarchical approach focused on access to educational and professional resources. The collective’s active members are Lina Ivanova, Laura Bivolaru, Victoria Doyle, Alexander Mourant and Lucas Gabellini-Fava, with honorary members, Krasimira Butseva and Ibrahim Azab.

Read the Meet the Curators Interview

JoshBilton, Clay Cast Of Two Hands Touching, 2020. 339x290mm. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Joshua Bilton, Clay Cast of Two Hands Touching, 2020. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Marie Smith, Extraction: In Conversation with Anna Atkins, 2023. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Marie Smith, Extraction: In Conversation with Anna Atkins, 2023. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Jackson Whitefield, Imprint I, 2023. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Jackson Whitefield, Imprint I, 2023. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Eugénie Shinkle, Ideal City (Somebody Else’s Landscape), 1998 – 2. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.
Eugénie Shinkle, Ideal City (Somebody Else’s Landscape), 1998 – 2. Courtesy of Revolv Collective.

2023 PHOTO50: BEAUTIFUL EXPERIMENTS

London Art Fair Photo50 2023 theme was Beautiful Experiments, curated by Pelumi Odubanjo and Katy Barron.

The 2023 edition of Photo50 brought together the work of a group of multigenerational women and non-binary photographers whose practices engage with their diasporic heritage, and through their lens explore domestic life and the home as not only a physical place but also a space of memory and generational exchange.

Click the link below to lookback at the 2023 Photo50 exhibition.

The Body Remembers, This England (#4)2020, Heather Agyepong(Commissioned by The Hyman Collection)
Heather Agyepong, The Body Remembers, 2020. Courtesy of The Hyman Collection
Joy Gregory, Butter Dish From Home, 2018
Joy Gregory, Butter Dish From Home, 2018
Adaeze Ihebom, The Artist's Room, 2022
Adaeze Ihebom, The Artist's Room, 2022

2023 EXHIBITING ARTISTS

Heather Agyepong | Joy Gregory | Adaeze Ihebom | Marcia Michael | Bernice Mulenga | Sofia Yala | Marlene Smith | Rubee Samuel | Maxine Walker | Adama Jalloh | Eileen Perrier

“We tried to find a way to allow the photographers space to consider their ideas and share them with us. Some of these voices have not been heard and we feel that they deserve a platform. The exhibition is an opportunity for them to experiment with their ideas without constraints. The beauty in these works is both visual but also emotional as they share intimate domestic or interior moments with the viewer.” 

– Pelumi Odubanjo and Katy Barron

MEET THE CURATORS

Katy Barron and Pelumi Mulenga portrait Credit Bernice Mulenga
Katy Barron and Pelumi Mulenga. Courtesy of Bernice Mulenga

Pelumi Odubanjo is a curator, researcher, and writer based in London. Her interests in contemporary art are cross-disciplinary, although her understanding is filtered through the lens of Photography which informs both her work as a curator and researcher. Pelumi works with artists, archives, and cultural artefacts to create and explore dialogues across a global African diaspora to disentangle our understanding of archival practice. Pelumi has a BA from Newcastle University in Fine Art, and an MA from Goldsmith’s, University of London in Contemporary Art Theory. She is currently a PhD candidate in History of Art at the University of Glasgow.

Her writing on contemporary photography, art, and culture has appeared in Magnum Photos, New Contemporaries, Artillery Magazine, Photoworks, and Photo Fringe amongst others. Pelumi currently works as an Curatorial Assistant at the Serpentine Galleries, and has curated at festivals and institutions such as Photo Oxford, 2021, the Tate Exchange at Tate Modern, 2020, Brighton Photo Fringe, 2020, and the Black Cultural Archives, 2020.

 

Katy Barron is a photography curator, mentor and advisor based in London. She has worked within the field of photography for the past 20 years, focusing on contemporary and twentieth century artists. Katy has undertaken a myriad of roles within the field – from Senior Director at Michael Hoppen Gallery to Chair of the Board of Photofusion. She currently works for the Maud Sulter Estate in Glasgow and is helping other women artists with issues around their archives, estates and legacies. Katy has a BA from the Courtauld Institute of Art and an M. Litt in the History of Art from Oxford University. She has curated numerous photographic exhibitions in the UK and abroad, most recently at Four Corners in Bethnal Green, St John’s College, Oxford as a part of the Photo Oxford festival and at Photofusion, Brixton.

 

Photography Focus Day

London Art Fair’s Photography Focus Day will features a day of Talks and Tours dedicated to the examination and discussion of some of the most innovative and distinctive elements of contemporary photographic practice. The 2025 Programme will be announced in Autumn 2024. 

Photo50 Partners

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GALLERIES

Each year, galleries at London Art Fair showcase the very best Modern and Contemporary Art, from established names to today’s leading artists. Discover the 2023 Galleries.

ENCOUNTERS

Encounters is a curated showcase of the freshest contemporary art from across the globe, featuring large-scale installations, solo shows and thematic group displays.

PLATFORM

Platform is a guest-curated presentation that brings together well-known, overlooked and emerging artists into conversation around a single, unifying theme.

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