Mother Father, by Lucie Rachel

At a recent Street Level Photoworks ‘In Focus’ event, looking at book publishing, which we attended, we had the pleasure of listening to Lucie Rachel discuss her book-in-progress, ‘Mother Father’, a story documenting the relationship of her parents. Impressed with the work, and Lucie’s approach, we asked if we could showcase it here. Lucie kindly agreed….

Mother Father

Mother Father, by Lucie Rachel.
LucieRachel_2_BookSpread

Mother Father tells the story of my parents’ relationship through recent and archive
photographs, letters, diary exerts and online blog entries from both before and after my
father came out as transgender. Beginning with recent photographs of my Mother holding
her diary open on the page they met in 1979, the documentation follows the couple through
marriage, children, coming out and separation, finally leaving them in 2015.

LucieRachel_3_BookSpread
LucieRachel_4_BookSpread

The creation of the book was almost unintentional; a natural bi-product of my art practice.
I began working with my parents in 2013, almost two years after their separation. It was at
this time that I realised I knew very little about either of them and even less about their
relationship, especially from the years before my sister and I had become a part of it.
Through curiosity and an overwhelming desire to know and understand, the project began.
Originally I had no thoughts of making a book; I simply collected photos that I liked or felt
were insightful into an album, with no order or narration, which gradually grew in the
background into a substantial folder of material. Over a year later it had expanded to the
point of being a work in its own right. A compilation of photos, letters, blog and diary
entries which tell a story of love, hardship and acceptance, that I feel deserves to be told.

‘Without love, life has no purpose’ was the guiding principle of my Mother’s youth. Her
naive pursuit of true love was endearingly hopeless, built upon the foundations of
Hollywood cliches and Bronte novels. So when she met my Father on the eve of the New
Year 1976, she honestly believed she had found ‘the one’. Of course, reality never quite
matches up with expectations and her idyllic notions of married life were left to flounder in
the unpredictable but extraordinary relationship that was to follow.

Mother holding open her diary March 19th 1976, describing her first date with my father. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Mother holding open her diary March 19th 1976, describing her first date with my
father. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Lovers enjoying the summer of 1976, captured by a family friend. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Lovers enjoying the summer of 1976, captured by a family friend. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Their frst child arrives, feeling blessed they have a daughter. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Their first child arrives, feeling blessed they have a daughter. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.

Fortunately, this was an exceptionally well documented partnership. My mother kept a
diary, intimately documenting their seemingly normal relationship. Likewise, my Father
rarely removed the camera throughout most of their time together, not to mention the
many letters penned to my Mother during her college years which still sleep under her bed.

Alone in bed; my father behind the camera. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Alone in bed; my father behind the camera. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Taken by my 4 year old self, oblivious to what I was capturing. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Taken by my 4 year old self, oblivious to what I was capturing. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.

However, during their fifth year together there happened a somewhat unusual revelation,
when my father came out to my mother as transgender. Unsurprisingly, this changed the
fundamental dynamics of their relationship and diverted them on a journey neither one of
them could have anticipated. The chronicling of the relationship was continued thereafter
in the form of an online blog kept by my father and further private writings by my mother.
The subsequent collection of materials follows their relationship from the exhilarating
highs of young love and through the turbulent waters of domesticity.

My father's frst pair of heels are still her favourite. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
My father’s first pair of heels are still her favourite. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
My father in her kitchen exuding discomfort; unable to be her true self in the moment I hold my camera. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
My father in her kitchen exuding discomfort; unable to be her true self in the
moment I hold my camera. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Exhausted after our evening out, she removes most of her make up - but forgets the necklace. From 'Mother, Father' by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.
Exhausted after our evening out, she removes most of her make up – but forgets
the necklace. From ‘Mother Father’ by Lucie Rachel. ©Lucie Rachel 2015, all rights reserved.

Mother Father is also accompanied by a short film with the same title, in which my parents
talk retrospectively about their relationship. The book is currently in the Dundee Artists’
Book Collection in the VRC at Dundee Contemporary Arts and the film has been shown at
several film festivals this year including Aesthetica Short Film Festival and Underwire
Festival, gaining award nominations at both. The work will next be exhibited together at
the Royal Scottish Academy’s New Contemporaries Exhibition in March 2016.

At present, I am working on a short documentary about my own father-daughter
relationship with The Scottish Documentary Institute‘s Bridging The Gap programme,
which will premiere at Edinburgh International Film Festival in May 2016.

Lucie Rachel can be contacted via Twitter and via her website.

Donnie Maclean’s ‘A Glasgow Kiss’

We caught up recently with Donnie MacLean, whose work we have featured previously, to see what he has been up to on the streets and we were pleased to hear that he’s just about to launch new work in a new photography show along with a book, ‘A Glasgow Kiss’. Below we share some of Donnie’s new work, and the details of the show and further events at the same gallery. – Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert.

 

From 'A Glasgow Kiss' book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.
From ‘A Glasgow Kiss’ book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.

From 'A Glasgow Kiss' book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.
From ‘A Glasgow Kiss’ book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.

 

Donnie tells us more, “During May 2015 Six Foot Gallery, in Glasgow, will be hosting it’s first ever Month of Photography! Presenting three shows across 4 weeks, SFG aims to bring together a showcase of work from a diverse range of practitioners from across Scotland.

1st // ‘4/4’ // The Forgotten Collective take on the dual roles of photographer and curator as they each invite one photographer to join the group and create 4/4 as part of Six Foot Gallery’s Photo Month. Designed to highlight the individual, but also to celebrate the wider photographic world “4/4’ seeks to understand how the natural comparisons and contrasts found within any group can influence the work of the individual and how the individual can change the face of the group. Forgotten Collective member Donald John MacLean will be launching his latest book of images “A Glasgow Kiss” during the opening of 4/4 on Friday 1st May.

From 'A Glasgow Kiss' book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.
From ‘A Glasgow Kiss’ book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.

From 'A Glasgow Kiss' book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.
From ‘A Glasgow Kiss’ book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.

 

11th // ‘A GLASS EXPANSE’ // A Glass Expanse brings together 10 female photographic graduates from across the discipline who have assembled to create a body of self portraiture work that explores their concerns and subject matter as practitioners and as women. The work aims to create an image of the ‘Female Landscape’ as it is viewed by their lens, an impression from source of what role gender plays in the narrative of these landscapes and the relevance of lense based media as the vehicle for these communications. Curated by Alice Gordon.

21st // SFG OPEN RESIDENCY //
The artist chosen in the SFG artist residency programme, supported by Street Level Photoworks & Menzies Hotels.

As well as this we also have some absolute gems lined up for an instagram takeover, the launch of ‪#‎EverydayGlasgow‬ and a very special Talk See Photography panel ‘Female Landscapes’, with Aileen Campbell, Gillian Gilbert, and TalkSee’s very own Nina Bacos.”

From 'A Glasgow Kiss' book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.
From ‘A Glasgow Kiss’ book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.

From 'A Glasgow Kiss' book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.
From ‘A Glasgow Kiss’ book, ©Donnie Maclean 2015, all rights reserved.

 

Donnie also has plans for a new book of his Glasgow street photography work,” A Glasgow Kiss”,  launching during the opening of 4/4 on Friday 1st May.

 

Ratio7:1 Question Time

Earlier this week photographer Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert represented Document Scotland on a panel discussion held in Edinburgh on the topic of ‘Photography in Scotland’. Organised and hosted by Ratio 7:1 photography collective, a new collective of students of photography from Napier University, and held to coincide with their ‘Dismantle’ exhibition which is currently showing, the evening was deemed to be a huge success by all who took part and those attending as audience. Speakers on the discussion panel, ably chaired by Ratio 7:1’s John Dougan, were Malcolm Dickson of Street Level Photoworks, photographers David Eustace, Ron O’Donnell, & Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert, and Dr. Roberta McGrath of Napier University, Edinburgh. Lively debates emerged between audience and panel, stimulated by questions from the audience on subjects such as gender bias in photography, the history of Scottish photography, the future of photography in Scotland, and what is success and how do you achieve it? As ever there were no definitive answers, but lots of opinions offered giving much fuel for thought and further discussion.

Document Scotland would like to congratulate John Dougan and his Ratio 7:1 colleagues on their ‘Dismantle’ photography show, and for organising and hosting such a successful panel discussion event. To find out a little more about Ratio 7:1, why they hosted the discussion evening, etc, we asked John to tell us a bit of their plans. The below comes from John and shows a few images of the evening.

 

John Dougan of Ratio 7:1 introduces the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.
John Dougan of Ratio 7:1 introduces the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.

 

The audience at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.
The audience at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.

 

Malcolm Dickson (centre of image) of Street Level Photoworks answers a question at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.
Malcolm Dickson (centre of image) of Street Level Photoworks answers a question at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.

 

“Ratio 7:1 is a collective made up of seven year three students on the BA Photography programme at Edinburgh Napier University. John Dougan, Lysann Ehmann, Erin Semple, Adam Winship, Susan McFadzean, Denitsa Toshirova and Anete Atvare came together to form Ratio 7:1 as part of a course module that required students to form a group and hold an exhibition of their work. The outcome of this was Dismantle, an exhibition held at Gayfield Creative Spaces in Edinburgh between 20th-26th March 2015.

Since the start of the process, we aimed to put on an event that would be well received and memorable to the people who heard of us and passed through the doors, this is how Question Time came about. We wanted to put on a panel discussion set up by students for people who, like ourselves, were interested in gaining insight into what the landscape of Scottish photography is like and what it takes to become a player in the industry.

For us, the event was a huge success and the liveliness of the discussion was very inspiring. Hearing well respected individuals share fiery exchanges clearly showed an existing passion for photography. I know for sure that we, as well as many of our friends in the audience found the experience very motivating. What was particularly beneficial was getting the opportunity to hear people we perceive as successful speak openly about the relationship between their personal and professional lives. This was a great opportunity to build realistic expectations on what life will be like post university.

 

Photographer artist Ron O'Donnell (in blue) talks at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.
Photographer artist Ron O’Donnell (in blue) talks at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.

 

The audience at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.
The audience at the panel event. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.

 

The panel! Left to right: Artist Ron O'Donnell, Street Level's Malcolm Dickson, Dr. Robert McGrath of Napier Univ., John Dougan of Ratio 7:1, and Photographers David Eustace and Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.
The panel! Left to right: Artist Ron O’Donnell, Street Level’s Malcolm Dickson, Dr. Roberta McGrath of Napier Univ., John Dougan of Ratio 7:1, and Photographers David Eustace and Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert. ©Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert 2015, all rights reserved.

 

After such a positive experience with Tuesday night’s discussion, I personally would love to explore the idea of hosting more panel discussions, perhaps hosting a weekend of talks in the future. I know that TalkSee Photography, who are based in Glasgow recently held a panel discussion with Malcolm Dickson of StreetLevel, Ben Harman of Stills and Amanda Catto of Creative Scotland on at the CCA in Glasgow which was well attended and offered good discussion points also. I wouldn’t be opposed to collaborating with the organisers at TalkSee to see what we can do to make sure debates continue to happen in both Glasgow and Edinburgh.

In regards to Ratio 7:1, after two long semesters we are taking a break to concentrate on other areas of our studies. This however does not mean that we won’t come back together in the future, it is just hard to say for sure at the moment. All seven of us will continue to make work and will hopefully have more opportunities to exhibit said works in the near future. You can keep up to date with all of our activity via our facebook page and out Twitter page.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Document Scotland and all of the participants for being a part of the discussion and supporting our exhibition and programme of events.” – John Dougan, Ratio7:1 photography collective.

 

John Dougan's work on display at the Ration 7:1 photography show, Edinburgh. ©John Dougan 2015, all rights reserved.
John Dougan’s work on display at the Ration 7:1 photography show, Edinburgh. ©John Dougan 2015, all rights reserved.

 

John Dougan's work on display at the Ration 7:1 photography show, Edinburgh. ©John Dougan 2015, all rights reserved.
John Dougan’s work on display at the Ration 7:1 photography show, Edinburgh. ©John Dougan 2015, all rights reserved.

 

 

 

Picture Power, Radio4

It’s always been said that the members of Document Scotland have a great face for radio, so we took everyone at their word… We’re very pleased to announce that next week you’ll be able to hear our dulcet tones, our lovely Scottish accents on Radio 4.

Miles Warde of Radio 4 very nicely came along to the opening night of our ‘Common Ground’ show last August at Street Level Photoworks in Glasgow, and interviewed us about the photography we’d been doing all year in the run up to the show and the run up to the Sept 18th referendum on Scottish Independence. Miles has craftily woven comments and quotes together, from interviews with Sophie as she was out photographing on the streets, and then interviews with the rest of us at the gallery opening, and has produced a 15minute programme which will broadcast on Wednesday 4th February, at 13:45hrs, on BBC Radio4.

The programme is one in the Picture Power series, in which Miles talks to various photographers about how they covered the big news stories of 2014. All programmes will be worth a listen we are sure!

We’d be ever so grateful if you could tune it to listen and in advance help spread the word to anyone who may be interested. Thank you.  And of course, huge thanks to Miles Warde and the team at Picture Power!

Radio 4's Miles Warde speaks to Colin McPherson, at the Common ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks,  in Glasgow, Scotland 28 August 2014
Radio 4’s Miles Warde speaks to Colin McPherson, at the Common ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks, in Glasgow, Scotland, 28 August 2014

 

Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks,  in Glasgow, Scotland 28 August 2014
Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks, in Glasgow, Scotland
28 August 2014

 

Radio 4's Miles Warde speaks to Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert, at the Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks,  in Glasgow, Scotland 28 August 2014
Radio 4’s Miles Warde speaks to Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert, at the Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks, in Glasgow, Scotland, 28 August 2014

 

Neil-exhibition-streetlevel
Sophie’s project – Scottish Sweet Sixteen – features first time voters, like Neil pictured here. They can be heard in the programme seeing their portraits on the walls of Streetlevel Photoworks for the very first time.

 

Radio 4's Miles Warde speaks to Stephen McLaren and Colin McPherson, at the Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks,  in Glasgow, Scotland 28 August 2014
Radio 4’s Miles Warde speaks to Stephen McLaren and Colin McPherson, at the Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks, in Glasgow, Scotland, 28 August 2014

 

Document Scotland are...  Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks,  in Glasgow, Scotland 28 August 2014
Document Scotland are… Common Ground photography exhibition at Street Level Photoworks, in Glasgow, Scotland
28 August 2014

 

The Road Ahead

 

Snow-capped Ben Cruachan seen from Glen Lonan on 28. December 2014 by Colin McPherson.
Snow-capped Ben Cruachan seen from Glen Lonan on 28. December 2014 by Colin McPherson.

 

It was, we were constantly reminded in the media and elsewhere, a year like no other. Certainly, for those of us who wield a camera for a living or for enjoyment – or both – there was no shortage of subject matter on which we could focus our energies on in Scotland in 2014.

From the Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup, Year of Homecoming, Bannockburn Commemoration to the major political event of our age, the Independence referendum, Scottish photographers and photographers working in Scotland were spoilt for choice. And beyond those headline events, there were countless spin-off stories to be covered and ideas to be explored. As a result, work made here was in demand both at home an internationally. Hardly a week went by when images by Scottish photographers wasn’t featured in the most prestigious and widely-read publications around the globe.

Scotland the brave? On the Referendum trail with Document Scotland's Stephen McLaren, 2014
Scotland the brave? On the Referendum trail with Document Scotland’s Stephen McLaren, 2014.

 

At the same time, galleries, institutions and organisations stepped up to the plate to produce and exhibit work which engaged audiences and distilled the themes and current trends in photography in Scotland. Street Level Photoworks continued to be be a major hub, staging events and showing photography which pulled together many strands and tapped into the 2014 Glasgow buzz. Both Stills Gallery and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh had vibrant programmes on display and ended the year with two shows which looked beyond our borders to bring acclaimed work by Mikhael Subotzky and Patrick Waterhouse (Ponte City) and Chloe Dewe Mathews (Shot At Dawn). At internal and external locations across the country, the photographic image took centre stage in 2014.

Scotland's future: Sophie Gerrard's study of the nations youth who had their say in 2014.
Scotland’s future: Sophie Gerrard’s study of the nation’s youth who had their say in 2014.

 

At what of Document Scotland? It would take more than one short blog to chronicle everything we produced or participated in during a frenetic year. The stand-outs were our solo show at Impressions Gallery in Bradford (Beyond the Border) and our collaboration with Welsh collective A Fine Beginning at Street Level Photoworks (Common Ground). The spin-off from these major events were the salon evening we staged at diverse locations across Scotland, from a community hall on a tiny, car-free island in Argyll, to the sell-out event at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in early summer. At all our salon events, we had the pleasure of showing not only our current work, but new and historic photography made by numerous celebrated, established or emerging practitioners, such as Sarah Amy Fishlock, Emily Macinnes, Ben Roberts, Arpita Shah and many, many others. As with the salon events, Document Scotland’s collaborative modus operandi continued to extend to our website, which showcased projects, essays and exhibitions by Scottish photographers and photography made in Scotland. These projects also spawned a hefty publication: Common Ground, an 84-page compendium, which told the story of Document Scotland’s year, set against the fascinating and turbulent events swirling around us.

Who do you think you are? Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert on the trail of the common ridings in 2014
Who do you think you are? Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert followed the common ridings around the Borders in 2014.

 

Document Scotland were grateful to receive support from a number of sources which enabled us to put together our programme of events and realise our ideas in 2014. Principal amongst these were Creative Scotland and the University of St. Andrews Library’s Special Collections department, as well as all the organisations we collaborated with throughout the year. It was especially gratifying to think that so much of the photography we made during 2014 will now reside in the internationally-acclaimed photographic archive in St. Andrews as a result of our partnership with them.

So how do we follow all that? Certainly the political focus on Scotland will be softer through 2015, although with both a General Election and elections to the Scottish Parliament on the horizon, the Referendum backwash promises to be fascinating. Beyond those narrow confines, it’s not difficult to imagine that Scottish photographers will have plenty to pick over after last year’s feast. There will be a season of photography in Edinburgh for starters and at the end of that programme, Document Scotland’s first solo show on Scottish soil will launch in late-September at SNPG’s Robert Mapplethorpe Photography Gallery. Each of our four photographers will be presenting new images which reference the projects they have been working on over the last couple of years. There will be a programme of artists talks, salon events and more, all currently in the planning. As always, we’ll be out-and-about engaging with Scottish photography and looking for work to highlight on our website and blog. If you have anything you think we may be interested in, please get in touch.

In the meantime, Document Scotland wishes you a Happy New Year and all the best for a wonderful, successful and fulfilling 2015. Slainte!

Identity, Future and Belonging

 

Guests at an orthodox wedding ceremony, Garnethill synagogue, Glasgow. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.
Guests at an orthodox wedding ceremony, Garnethill synagogue, Glasgow. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.

 

Published some years ago by the World Jewish Congress, Jewish Communities of the World is a slim anthology providing a snapshot of the history of Jewish people in each country of the world at the end of the 20th century. In dates and numbers, it lists how many Jews are living in their respective countries and details how many have ‘made aliyah’ or in other words emigrated to the state of Israel. Tucked away in a sub-section chronicling the United Kingdom, mention is made of the small, but thriving, Jewish community of Scotland, one whose roots stretch back to the late 18th century, many of whom have played significant roles in Scottish life in the intervening two centuries.

Jewish  analytical chemist at a whisky distillery, Fife. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.
Jewish analytical chemist at a whisky distillery, Fife. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.

 

Scotland’s Jews have never been the most visible of the country’s immigrant communities, yet their contribution to public life has been immense. From the legal profession to artists, politicians and even distillers and salmon farmers, Jewish people have contributed to and enriched Scotland’s story since the first Jews settled in Edinburgh over two hundred years ago. It is against this backdrop that Glasgow-born writer Michael Mail created a project entitled Tartan Arts which recognises and celebrates the story of the Scottish Jewish community, and which commissioned a study of contemporary Jewish life in Scotland by award-winning documentary photographer Judah Passow. Shot throughout 2013 in locations from Shetland to the Borders, the result is a superb book and an exhibition entitled Scots Jews – Identity, Future and Belonging which is currently touring Scotland and being simultaneously shown at various venues across the USA.

As Michael Mail explains: “I was looking for a way to recognise and celebrate the story of the remarkable, yet little known, Scottish Jewish community. When I came across Judah Passow’s photography, I immediately realised that he had the skill, sensitivity and artistry to take on this subject and create a truly memorable piece of work, which is precisely what Judah has achieved with Scots Jews.”

The Rabbi of Edinburgh’s Liberal congregation. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.
The Rabbi of Edinburgh’s Liberal congregation. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.

 

Passow’s work gets to the heart of the community; we see social occasions such as weddings and Burns Night celebrations and depictions of prominent people and ordinary working environments. Passow’s ability to capture the mood of the subject is enhanced by the use of monochrome imagery. We feel the history, yet the setting is contemporary. The people, places and ceremonies look familiar, but with a particular, subtle twist which informs us that we are outsiders looking in. It is a warm, compassionate and at times humorous study of a community in Scotland at ease with itself, its identity and its surroundings. As Judah Passow himself notes: “This project has been a real voyage of discovery across the spiritual and cultural landscape of Scotland. One of its more remarkable features is the warm, proud Jewish community that has become so tightly woven into the national fabric. I hope people looking at these photographs will see what I saw – a people deeply devoted to their heritage both as Jews and Scots.”

Burns Night at the L’Chaim kosher restaurant in Glasgow. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.
Burns Night at the L’Chaim kosher restaurant in Glasgow. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.

 

The exhibition is currently on show at Aberdeen Central Library until December before it comes to Street Level Photoworks for an eagerly-anticipated run at the Glasgow venue in the new year. Gallery director Malcolm Dickson, who was involved in advising Michael Mail about the project, is in no doubt about the importance of Passow’s work: “I have always liked Judah’s work as a photojournalist; Scots Jews proposes a narrative and display that will appeal to a wide range of people. Importantly, it tells a moving story of Jewish everyday life in the Scottish landscape, and how deeply embedded they are in the twin dualities of their identities, as Scots, and as Jews. The prospect of the project linking up regional venues added further appeal to its reach.”

Jewish and Muslim pupils studying the Torah together in a religious education class at Calderwood Lodge Primary School. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.
Jewish and Muslim pupils studying the Torah together in a religious education class at Calderwood Lodge Primary School. Photograph © Judah Passow, 2013.

 

Scotland’s Jews may be regarded as a somewhat subliminal community, happy to get on with their lives and play their part away from the public glare. This long-overdue book and accompanying exhibition shines a light on them and brings them to the fore and we as a society are richer for it.

 

 

 

 

Folio reviews at ‘Common Ground’, 29th Aug.

To kick start our joining Common Ground show at Street Level Photoworks, with our friends from A Fine Beginning photo collective from Wales, we’re holding some folio review sessions on August 29th, from 2pm – 4pm.

 

Portfolio Reviews Impressions Gallery July 2014 © Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert
Portfolio Reviews July 2014 © Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert

 

One photographer from Document Scotland will join one photographer from A Fine Beginning and together we can review your folios! The 20min sessions cost £10.00, which is basically an administration charge and a way of ensuring that those who book do mean to arrive…(not always the case!).

You can see the pairings of photographers on this linked page (read a few words about them) and book your session there! We hope you can make it, we all enjoy seeing new work, and we look forward to chatting over your work or work practice with you and helping give some advice.

 

 

 

 

Common Ground – Press Release

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This important and timely exhibition showcases groundbreaking new work from some of Wales and Scotland’s contemporary photographers.

Document Scotland, formed in 2012 by Colin McPherson, Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert, Sophie Gerrard and Stephen McLaren, are responding to the global audience looking at Scotland at this, one of the most important times in the country’s history.

Formed in the wake of Document Scotland in 2012, the Welsh collective A Fine Beginning is made up of photographers James O Jenkins, Jack Latham, Abbie Trayler- Smith and Gawain Barnard and showcases contemporary photography being made in Wales.
“I am delighted that Street Level Photoworks will be staging this exhibition of new photography by Document Scotland. These are exciting times for the collective and for photography in Scotland and their collaboration with A Fine Beginning is a positive message that Scottish photography is relevant, informative and outward facing.” –

Malcolm Dickson, Street Level Photoworks.

Key dates:

  • Tuesday 26th August – ‘Common Ground’ launches at Street Level.
  • Thursday 28th August – preview evening 6-8pm.
  • Friday 29th August – portfolio reviews and workshops with Document Scotland, A Fine Beginning and invited guests from the photography industry.
  • Saturday 30th August – talks and publication launch.

For further information or images please contact:

Document Scotland: ColinMcPherson

07831 838 717
www.documentscotland.com
@DocuScotland

A Fine Beginning: James O Jenkins

07876 341 910
www.afinebeginning.com
@afinebeginning

Listings information: Common Ground: New Documentary Photography from Scotland & Wales
Street Level Photoworks, Glasgow
26th August – 19th October 2014
Free
www.streetlevelphotoworks.org

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Download the PDF of this press release here.

Going The Distance

Going The Distance is a Street Level Photoworks organised open show and features, amongst others, the work by Document Scotland’s Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert, from his projects ‘Park Run’ and ‘Life In The 3rd’.

“Sport, like art, is a universal language, it is part of our everyday lives, and a feature of our society’s diverse cultural life, involving people of all abilities and backgrounds. This exhibition was coordinated to mark the Commonwealth Games in Scotland and celebrates the exceptional and the commonplace in sport. It will tour to other regional venues in Scotland in late 2014 + 2015 as a Games Legacy exhibition.” – Street Level.

The show venues, and partcipating photographers are as follows, as well as all work being shown from 13th October – 16th November at Eastwood Park Gallery, Giffnock.

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A reception was held today at the Harbour Arts Centre to launch the show with talks by photographer Keith Ingham and also Jeremy.

Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert's work on show.
Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert’s work on show.

 

Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert's work from his Rangers FC series 'Life In The 3rd' on show.
Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert’s work from his Rangers FC series ‘Life In The 3rd’ on show.

 

Robin Mitchell's 'Into The Blue - Portrait Series of Bowlers'.
Robin Mitchell’s ‘Into The Blue – Portrait Series of Bowlers’.

 

Keith Ingham tells the story of his work.
Keith Ingham tells the story of his work.

 

Keith Ingham tells the story of his work.
Keith Ingham tells the story of his work.

 

Jane Stockdale's work from the Brazil World Cup.
Jane Stockdale’s work from the Brazil World Cup.

 

Malcolm Dickson (centre) of Street Level Photoworks introduces the show.
Malcolm Dickson (centre) of Street Level Photoworks introduces the show.

 

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