We are still buzzing after such an interesting, creative and energetic evening at The Scottish National Portrait Gallery last night for Document Scotland’s 1st ever portrait event “Face To Face: The Portrait in Photography Today”.
Thank you to the photographers which Document Scotland invited to take part along side us, Ben Roberts, Arpita Shah, Emily Macinnes and Graham MacIndoe. Thank you to Annie Lyden, the International Curator of Photography at The Scottish National Portrait Gallery, and her brilliant team for chairing and organising the event with us. Thank you to you the audience for coming along, for sending us your support from a distance if you were unable to make it, for following the events on Twitter, for being there, for helping to spread the word, for making it such a success and for your support of Document Scotland on our (relatively short but eventful) journey so far.
Here’s some images from the night, if any of you have any others which you’d like to share with us please do send them in – we’d love to see them.
The evening started off with Document Scotland’s Sophie Gerrard who showed new work, made over the last 18 months during Sophie’s return to Scotland. Sophie talked about re-aquainting herself with Scotland through portraiture – and spoke of the collaboration between sitter and photographer when making a portrait.
Then we heard from Jeremy who talked us through his Roma portraits, his experiences of living and visiting the camps and later houses of those featured in the project, some individuals he met and re-photographed almost 10 years later. Jeremy also showed a short piece of film footage of him in the camp making his portraits.
Next up was Ben Roberts, who started by talking about some his influences, Chris Killip & Laura Pannack and then showed us images from the series ‘Higher Lands’, which Document Scotland featured as a portfolio on the website last year. He talked about his photographic process and approach to making the portraits and also about why they have remained such a popular body of work, raising the question that perhaps we all see a little of ourselves in these portraits.
After Ben we watched a moving piece of multimedia by Graham MacIndoe documenting his journey through heroin and crack cocaine addiction. Graham’s images have been featured in The Guardian and other press lately and his decision to release such a personal body of work was something he talked about in the multimedia presentation he made for the evening.
After the break first up was Colin McPherson with a lighter hearted look at his portraiture taken mostly from his 1 year journey along the border of Scotland with England. His presentation showed people he’d encountered along the way and those who had become part of the journey but who, in his words, remained strangers. He titled the collection “In the Company of Strangers”
Then we heard from Arpita Shah who took us through a several bodies of her work, and talked about the relationship between mythology and portraiture and how she uses it to explore the experience of Diaspora for Asians living in Scotland.
Then it was Emily Macinnes who showed, for the 1st time her project “Paradise Lost: Testimonies of Abuse”, a powerful presentation of images and text documenting the thoughts and experiences of men who have suffered sexual abuse. A powerful and moving piece.
Last, to finish the night was Stephen McLaren’s work who’s series of portraits of Americans in California was introduced by Annie Lyden and left us all with the sound of bagpipes in our ears – and a smile on our faces.