The Gatekeepers (work in progress) by Alex Ingram

The University of The West of England, Bristol graduate Alex Ingram was featured on Photograd previously with his series David's House. The series was published into a photobook in 2016 and Alex is now working in a new series of work, The Gatekeepers, which featured in the first edition of our zine, PGZ129, released earlier this year.

We introduce you here to images from The Gatekeepers which is currently a work in progress as Alex continues to return to the islands to make more images.


Scattered across the small islands surrounding the UK live lone wardens, spending their lives in quiet solidarity, away from the crowded, overpopulated landscapes of our urban world. Their role: to maintain and manage the preservation of their islands natural beauty and wildlife for future generations, whilst conducting research into these incredibly delicate ecosystems.

With limited access to the mainland during the winter months, no fresh running water, and under constant attack from harsh storms and perilous currents that can see them marooned for weeks at a time, it is not a role many are suited for.

What is it like living so close to the mainland, but yet so far removed from social norms? How do they cope when the currents are too strong to make it back over for fresh food and supplies? What is it like living without the modern day technologies that we take for granted? And how do they adapt and overcome these daily obstacles with limited human contact?

Over the next two years, these are the questions I want to explore. I will be visiting these remote islands and spending time with the wardens that have chosen to spend their lives there, in the hopes of better understanding what life is like living in some of the most beautiful, yet inhospitable landscapes in the UK.

In a world that is changing at a rapid pace, I want to question how this simplistic way of life fits within our modern world. 

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 All images from the series  The Gatekeepers

All images from the series The Gatekeepers

Revolv presents One Year photography exhibition at Safehouse 1 in London

 
 Image by Koral Markovich

Image by Koral Markovich

 Image by Veronica Viacava

Image by Veronica Viacava

Preview: Thurs 28th June 2018, 6.00 pm – 9.00 pm
Exhibition: Fri 29th – Sat 30th June, 10.00 am – 6.00 pm
Sun 1st July, 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
Venue: Safehouse 1, 139 Copeland Road, Peckham, London, SE15 3SN

The photography organisation Revolv Collective is celebrating its first anniversary with the One Year exhibition at Safehouse 1 in South East London, from Thursday 28th June to Sunday 1st July 2018.

To discover unseen digital, analogue and alternative photography, an open call went out to non-professional photographers, art graduates and current BA and MA students to submit a single image and contextual information.

The result is a stunning and varied collection by 77 photographers from 13 countries. On the opening evening, Revolv will officially launch an app, which will be an essential part of the interactive experience of the show. Another feature of this exhibition will be a Google Chrome Extension, where all the winning and shortlisted images will be included.

Joint statement by Revolv: “Our four-day One Year exhibition features beautiful and thought-provoking photographs by incredible talents from the UK and around the world, both previous Revolv contributors and many new to the platform. Tackling an array of important contemporary subject matters, via a diverse range of photographic styles and techniques, it is a fitting celebration of our mission: to provide greater exposure and opportunities for emerging photographers.”

At the preview on the Thursday, the founders of Revolv will reflect on the successes and challenges faced in the past year. Guests will also receive an insight into the selection of the images on show and find out about the Collective’s exciting upcoming plans.

During the main show, from Friday to Sunday, exhibiting artists are invited to bring additional works to spark open informal discussions. Members of the public, and prospective future Revolv contributors, are encouraged to come along and get involved and take part in our exhibition.

'The Clearing' by Chris Younger at Durham's newest arts festival - 4th – 17th June

ART DURHAM is a new and vibrant visual arts festival jointly organised by Durham University and Durham County Council. Along with Durham Festival of the Arts and DJazz, ART DURHAM celebrates Durham’s music, theatre and visual arts scene with exhibitions, events and workshops across the city throughout June.

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Durham based photographer Chris Younger will be taking over an empty retail store in the heart of Durham city centre with his new exhibition The Clearing. Younger invites us to consider the experience of being human. The Clearing is a space where we can reflect on our sense of self, ideas, and experiences. In The Clearing we build our understanding of ourselves, others and the world.

 Image from the series  The Clearing  by Chris Younger

Image from the series The Clearing by Chris Younger

The Clearing began as a response to the difficulties the artist felt in talking about his photography to others. This developed into an exploration of deeper anxieties regarding integrity, authenticity and self.

The Clearing draws inspiration from the work of German philosopher Martin Heidegger. Most influentially his notion of our anxieties arising from the conflict of being in the world and being with others.

The exhibition runs from 4th – 17th June in the Prince Bishops Shopping Centre, located on Durham’s historic peninsula, only a few minutes walk from Durham Cathedral. Entry is free.


Chris Younger (b. 1981, Newcastle) is an artist, photographer and filmmaker living in rural Durham, UK. He recently completed a Masters degree (with distinction) in Photography at the University of Sunderland and is currently artist-in-residence at Durham University's Josephine Butler College.

He uses landscape photography to explore the interactions between people, places and nature over time. His highly autobiographical work analyses formal notions of landscape through the filter of his own experiences.

We have prints from The Clearing available in the Photograd Shop!

Loupe Magazine issue 7

We’ve created a Fellowship with Loupe Magazine and will be bringing you news of brand new issues when they're released. Issue 7 has just landed and includes an interview with Matthew Genitempo who was selected as the winner of our recent collaborative call for work.

You can find a list of local stockists here but if you'd like to subscribe, Loupe are currently offering 20% off subscriptions made before 1st July!


Issue 7 of Loupe is out now! If you are quick copies available for free from our amazing stockists.

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Sticking with our theme of no theme, this issue contains our most diverse range of projects yet. It’s a real celebration of the varied styles in contemporary photography.

Matthew Genitempo won the Loupe x Photograd competition with his project Jasper, a poetic documentation of the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas, and the men who live there. We loved the work so much we decided to put it on the cover.

 Image from the series  Jasper  by  Matthew Genitempo

Image from the series Jasper by Matthew Genitempo

Final year student Ema Johnston is featured with her fresh take on the much explored topic of drag, accompanied by Sarah Goad’s words.

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Our online editor Harry Flook talked to Jack Fleming about his new body of work, Punching, which focusses on amateur boxing in Bristol and Brighton.

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Also featured is Lewis Bush’s Shadows of the State alongside an interview with Museum of London curator Anna Sparham and our other regular features.

If you can’t make it to stockist single copies, back issues and annual subscriptions are also available to purchase from our online store.

We hope you enjoy the issue!

Zine & Photobook Fair 2018

Open Eye Gallery are currently calling for zines and photobooks

Submissions to charlotte.t@openeye.org.uk - deadline Monday 11th June.


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30 JUNE / FREE / 11AM – 4PM

Join Zine-makers, publishers and photographers for a free all-day celebration of rare, hand made and self published books, journals and zines from the North West and beyond. The event will be held on Saturday 30 June from 11am – 4pm in the bright, covered Mann Island atrium space outside of the gallery. This will be a free event open to established publishers and enthusiasts alike and will be a great opportunity to meet with both local and established artists in the publishing community.

To submit, or for more information, get in touch by emailing charlotte.t@openeye.org.uk with “Submission Zine & Photobook Fair” in the email subject. Please make sure to include a PDF of your publication along with a brief text for each book/print including:

  • Contact details
  • Front cover image
  • Content preview
  • Summary/description of work
  • Publication dimensions
  • Number of copies available
  • Retail and trade prices
  • Whether you plan to attend the fair as a seller

Due to the limited space, we may not be able to include all submitted work. To avoid disappointment, please get in touch before Monday 11 June and we will get back to successful applicants by Monday 18 June, when then selection process is complete.

Good luck and let us know if you're making a submission!

More details can be found here.

The second edition of PGZ - open to submissions!

Calling 2018 photography graduates. This one's open to you!


We're looking for 11 photography graduates from UK university courses to be part of the second edition of our zine, PGZ, which will launch Summer 2018.

To submit, email a series of work, 100 word description, university, and website to photograd2018@gmail.com only with the subject 'ZINE'.
Submission deadline: 11th July. Open to 2018 photography graduates from UK courses only.

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A big thank you goes to Spectrum for helping us to bring the second edition of PGZ to life.

Calling 2018 Photography Graduates

We want your work!

We’re looking to reward 2 photography graduates with an interview on the Photograd Spotlight and 1 graduate with an extended Instagram Takeover.

To submit, email a series of work, description, university, and website to photograd2018@gmail.com.
Submission deadline: 13th June. Open to 2018 photography graduates from UK courses only.

 Image from the series  Utö  by Swansea College of Art - UWTSD 2018 graduate  Jasmine Färling

Image from the series Utö by Swansea College of Art - UWTSD 2018 graduate Jasmine Färling

Alexander Mourant - press preview at Hauser & Wirth, London

Falmouth University graduate and featured photographer Alexander Mourant attended a press preview of August Sander. Men Without Masks and Spiegelgasse (Mirror Alley) at Hauser & Wirth in London on behalf of Photograd. Here are some images from his visit.

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Photograd at PhotoEast 2018

A Photograd exhibition | Opening Thursday 24th May 2018 as part of PhotoEast

A selection of the Photograd community come together for PhotoEast 2018 to present work around the festival’s theme of Belonging | On display in the University of Suffolk’s Waterfront Building from 6pm Thursday 24th May - 6pm Sunday 24th June.

The Ipswich waterfront will be home to photographers who explore the theme of belonging in their work and Photograd featured graduates have come together to join in with the celebrations.

A collective of 12 photographers are representing Photograd and honouring the theme of Belonging at PhotoEast's second festival. Having been given one long wall in the universities Waterfront Building, Photograd have curated a varying sequence of work that is bound by these similar themes and attitudes. Differing print sizes entice the viewer to migrate through the space to view work at their own pace.

Digital copies of the full catalogue accompanying the Photograd exhibition can be found in our shop.


Each of the photographers in this exhibition have defined and secured the theme of Belonging in distinctive ways.

Norwich University of the Arts graduate Karim Skalli explores his identity and mixed cultural heritage though a series of photographs from which this image belongs. “As the son of an English mother and Moroccan father, the project attempts to show the coming together of cultures, the conflicts and juxtaposition created through merging English and Moroccan culture and the influence of this on my identity. The work ponders my western outsider gaze, my ‘cast on’ view of my father’s homeland whilst at the same time acknowledging my own sense of never being fully British.”

 Image from the series  Third Space  by  Karim Skalli

Image from the series Third Space by Karim Skalli

Newport University graduate Declan Connolly was part of the first Photograd exhibition in 2017 and continues to support, and be supported by, our community. “Becoming an Island addresses the themes of an isolated United Kingdom in the form of manipulated pebbles collected from its shores. Each image is a composite of a pebble photographed and re-photographed in various stages of physical erasure. Reflecting the audience's relationship with current Brexit negotiations, the work can be viewed as a series of coexisting and united objects or the immediate decline of a singular entity.”

 Image from the series  Becoming an Island  by  Declan Connolly

Image from the series Becoming an Island by Declan Connolly

Tom Owens studied at the University of Suffolk itself and graduated in 2014. Tom has continued to push his work since finishing his studies and presents here a new series, Estuarine Mud.

"This series is an extension of my successful Edgelands series. I repeatedly visit the same locations when making my work and it was a return visit to the source of my Edgelands project brought about by radical reshaping of the derelict factories at Cattawade to ready the site for a new railway depot that brought the creek at Cattawade into sharp focus. The series is shot from both sides of the Stour Estuary but only at dead low water on spring tides and with little or no wind. Most of the images are very early morning or just before sundown."

  Cattawade Creek  from the series  Estuarine Mud  by  Tom Owens

Cattawade Creek from the series Estuarine Mud by Tom Owens

The exhibition can be seen at the University of Suffolk’s Waterfront Building until Sunday 24th June before it makes its way to Norwich.
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Gökhan Tanriöver, debut solo show at Argentea Gallery. 18th May – 30th June 2018

Argentea Gallery
Confessionals
Gökhan Tanriöver
18th May – 30th June 2018
Opening: Thursday 17th May, 6-8pm

 Images from the series  Confessionals

Images from the series Confessionals

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Argentea Gallery is pleased to present the first solo exhibition of Gökhan Tanriöver’s Confessionals.

Comprising a series of black and white still life photographs, Confessionals is based on specific childhood experiences. Guided by Annette Kuhn’s process of ‘memory work’, a method and practice of unearthing and making public untold stories, Tanriöver’s personal memories are made tangible through the photograph. Each experience is first presented as a written confession from which an image is then constructed and the combination of image and text weaves a poignant autobiographical narrative.

This singularity of intent about the work, the public exposure of private experiences, is shown through the use of black and white. By removing the potential distraction of colour, Tanriöver has created images that are the embodiment of contrary forces. Black, being visually heavy and associated with power, authority and evil, is starkly contrasted with white, a colour that projects purity and salvation and is synonymous with new beginnings. Working with analogue, the studio and the darkroom are the physical space where Tanriöver’s meditative state acts as a form of autotherapy. This process has allowed him to produce images where these opposing forces of black and white don’t compete, but rather complement each other to communicate more effectively ideas of opposition and comparison, association and acceptance.

By offering his own emotional and psychological life as art, Tanriöver invites the viewer to share in his meditations on sorrow and remembrance.

Gokhan Tanriover is a Turkish-born photographic artist living in London. Following a brief medical career, he realised his vocation lay in visual culture. Drawing on his training as a junior psychiatrist his work consists of constructed imagery that focuses on personal and cultural identity informed by personal experience and memory.

After completing his BA (Hons) Photographic Art (2017) from the University of Westminster he has been shortlisted for the Peaches and Cream photography competition (2017) and selected as a finalist in the Royal Photographic Society International Photography Exhibition 160. His work has been included in 18 group exhibitions including Separation and Belonging that he co-curated as part of the Whitechapel Gallery’s First Thursday tour in May 2016. In 2017 he was chosen to participate in the Travers Smith CSR Art programme.

Fiona Filipidis - To make a prairie

For the duration of March we were seeking work from photography graduates alongside Loupe Magazine to reward with a collection of prizes and interviews. A lot of time was spent looking through the submissions and decisions were finally made. Here we present you with our final runner-up!

Fiona Filipidis was born in Paris and later studied for a BA in Photography in France before moving to study for an MA at London College of Communication. We've interviewed Fiona here about the series To make a prairie.


To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee,
One clover, and a bee,
And revery.
The revery alone will do,
If bees are few.

Emily Dickinson

Will revery alone really do if bees are few? As much as I love to daydream, I’m afraid the answer is a resounding, gut-wrenching ‘NO’. Bees are crucial to the continuation of human life. But our impact on the environment through the misuse of insecticides, added to the proliferation of pests and diseases and loss of habitat, is threatening the survival of this mighty insect. When bees have access to good nutrition, so do we – you can thank them for one in three bites of food you eat – and yet every batch of pollen has at least six pesticides in it.

From poetry to politics, religion to architecture, the honey bee has managed to waggle-dance itself into every nook and cranny of the human world. Our relationship with the bee is one that spans thousands of years, and I have attempted to synthesise it in one single book.

 From the series  To make a prairie

From the series To make a prairie

I divided this book into 6 chapters, each one edited in a specific way: a piece of writing is preceded by a full-page image and followed by a selection of images in relation to the text. The full-page images are of the stormy skies that descended over London on 16th October 2017, when hurricane Ophelia made her way to our shores. All I could hear and read at the time was “It’s the end of the world!” and I couldn’t help but find a parallel with what could potentially happen if bees were to become extinct. The texts are a mix of personal life experiences and detailed knowledge about the honey bee and its history in relation to us.

The imagery is a mix of found artefacts and my own photographs. Mingling the past with the present is my way of showing our constant and ever-growing relationship with the honey bee. My hope is that there is something for everyone in this book; if a teenager were to pick it up and see a photo of Beyoncé, I would love for it to peak their curiosity and push them to do a little bit of digging.

This project is more relevant now than ever. Every day, news articles emerge with ever-growing alarming headlines about bees and insects in general. We humans hold the fate of the wee honey bee in our millions of hands. By some unimaginable, intangible natural power, we have been given the gift of life, and it is our duty to make sure all living entities that share our cosmos continue on the path they were meant to take.

 From the series  To make a prairie

From the series To make a prairie

Can you introduce yourself? What and where did you study? What's your motto? I am a 28 year-old multicultural photographer who grew up in the leafy suburbs of Paris, France. My dad is half-French, half-Greek and my mum is half-English, half-Scottish. I have Portuguese relatives and grew up surrounded by friends from all over the globe, which I feel all greatly contributed to my openness and curiosity for the world. 

I studied for a BA in Photography in Paris before moving to the UK to pursue an MA in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography at London College of Communication, from which I graduated this past January. 

I have never had to think about a motto before, but maybe “laughter is the best medicine”! I love a good chuckle. 

 From the photobook  To make a prairie

From the photobook To make a prairie

Give us an overview of your work. What themes do you like to explore? My most recent projects are all related to nature and the environment in one way or another. Prior to To make a prairie, I was working on an image/text concept book called El Dorado which deals with the notion of gold in its broadest of meanings, whether it be physical or purely metaphorical, and What do you want to be when you grow up? which portrays our desire to reconnect with nature through a humorous, albeit slightly strange, depiction of my fantasized mother/daughter relationship with Phoebe, my favourite houseplant.

I always try to add an element of humour or levity to my projects and my writing, as I have come to realise that it helps people react to and interact with my work on a different level. I believe that you don’t always have to show the negative aspects of any given situation in order to bring awareness to it. I find the idea of talking about important issues contrasted with an underlying light-hearted tone to be a very interesting one that I would love to push further.

I recently came across an article written by Tim Davis on photogeliophobia, or the fear of funny photography, in which he states that, “The history of photography’s overall overseriousness starts to feel like a first date that can’t laugh at the ketchup he’s spilled in his lap.” And the combination of spilt ketchup and the noise the bottle makes while doing so is more often than not quite amusing.

 From the series  To make a prairie

From the series To make a prairie

What encouraged you to submit to the Loupe Magazine and Photograd call for work? Have you got any tips for photographers submitting work for similar opportunities? Getting your work out there is the tricky part upon graduating, as you want to use the momentum you’ve gathered throughout the year to propel you and keep pushing for your work to be seen. Photograd is the ideal platform to start, as you’re only a graduate once (or twice). I have been following the website for years now and have always been amazed by the quality of the photographic projects you choose to publish, and feel humbled to be in such great company. I am also excited whenever I come across new platforms such as Loupe Magazine, as I believe there can never be enough websites and magazines to showcase emerging talent. So the combination of both seemed perfect!

My main piece of advice would be to keep applying to calls and competitions, even if the constant rejections can cause you to lose hope (which I have lost on many occasions, but keeps returning again and again). I find being organised to also be very useful; I have monthly lists organised by closing dates on my desktop so that I know when I need to apply for calls, residencies, competitions, grants, and what to send.

 From the photobook  To make a prairie

From the photobook To make a prairie

How did this series come to the surface? Why did you decide to make work around our relationship with bees? It was all very coincidental, really, as most projects usually are! I was chatting with one of my tutors from LCC, Morag Livingstone, about what I could work on next when she, quite bluntly, asked me, “What pisses you off and what brings you joy?”. I realised there and then that a natural theme underlined all of my answers, and she saw my eyes light up when I told her about hives being kept on rooftops in the middle of Paris. I had also, like many other people, received dozens of email petitions to “Save the Bees” but had never given them much thought. And I had been struck by a photograph that was doing the rounds on Facebook at the time, showing what the fruit and veg aisle of a supermarket would look like if bees were to become extinct. So I started my research and within a couple of days that was it, I was hooked, all I could think of were bees, bees, bees. In my book, I quote British beekeeper R. O. B. Manley who defines bee fever as “a form of insanity from which you never really recover”, and to my great delight I think I’ve caught the bug, too. 

 From the photobook  To make a prairie

From the photobook To make a prairie

The outcome of To make a prairie is a photobook. Describe your book and particular layout of images. I divided To make a prairie into 6 chapters, each edited in a specific way: a piece of writing is preceded by a full-page image and followed by a selection of images in relation to the text. The full-page images are of the stormy skies that descended over London last October, when hurricane Ophelia made her way over here and people kept saying that it felt like the end of the world; I couldn’t help but find a parallel with what could potentially happen if bees were to become extinct. The texts are a mix of personal life experiences and detailed knowledge about the honey bee and its history in relation to us. And the pictures are a mix of found archival imagery and my own photographs. The image pairings are often comical and bounce off one another as I wanted to constantly excite the reader’s eye and not let it become accustomed to one type of image. My hope is that there is something for everyone in this book; if a teenager were to pick it up and see a photo of Beyoncé, I would love for it to pique their curiosity and push them to do a little bit of digging. As for the cover, the bee drawing was created by my cousin’s 5-year-old daughter, Caitlin. 

Was it important that you executed this work in the form of a photobook? Yes, I knew from the start that the final form of this project would be a book. I am an avid photobook reader, collector and admirer. I spend a good amount of time looking at sequencing, layouts, papers, binding techniques and feel genuine joy when I come across a book which excites both my eyes and my fingers! I had always wanted to make a book from start to finish, from the image making to the editing to the design of it, and saw this project as the perfect opportunity to do so. 

 From the series  To make a prairie

From the series To make a prairie

What are your future plans? I am currently trying to publish, or self-publish, To make a prairie, as well as working on a zine about a trip I took to California in February. In about a month’s time I will be doing a 3-week artist residency in northern Italy with Ardesia Projects and Jest, a photography gallery in Turin, which I am very excited about. And I will forever be working on researching bees in order to fully live up to my “bee-lady” image!

An interview with photography graduate and curator Millie Battershill

Norwich University of the Arts photography graduate Millie Battershill recently got in touch to tell us about her route into curation. Millie has had the opportunity to curate one show so far and below she tells us more.


Who are you? What and where did you study? My name is Millie Battershill and I graduated in 2016 with a degree in photography from Norwich University of the Arts.

What’s your photographic work typically about? What themes do you like to explore? My work tends to be fairly abstract; I work with a macro lens the majority of the time if I’m shooting what I would call a ‘proper project’ – that’s one which has a more considered concept. I like to photograph textures, mostly from natural subjects that I find outside. Before this approach developed, I enjoyed photographing landscapes so it makes sense that I’m still interested in nature. The projects often have concepts that I would say are loosely based on time, existence, thoughts, emotions and possibly memory in some cases. 

 From the series  Cotton Wool  by  Millie Battershill

From the series Cotton Wool by Millie Battershill

I also photograph on film, however these images make up projects that have less of a concept, and are more related to documenting. That being said, I think that my work has an overarching theme running through it, which is exploring life, the notion of living and existing.

You’ve been gaining experience of curating exhibitions. Tell us how you’ve gone about this? I always thought that if I did any kind of further education after my degree, I would probably study curating. This is what I ended up doing. Mostly, I’ve been learning how things are done rather than actually doing them, but I’m now working on a show with an artist, Charlotte Powell, which will go on show in May. 

What do you enjoy most about the curating process? Curating a show involves a lot of admin work for the curator. This is something that sounds boring but I enjoy making contact with various people and pulling together resources to create something. I also like the process of learning about the artist’s work and discussing how it can best be displayed. 

 From the series  Cotton Wool  by  Millie Battershill

From the series Cotton Wool by Millie Battershill

What initially encouraged you, after studying photography, to learn how to curate? If I’m honest I think I got what I needed from my photography degree. That’s not to say that no one would benefit from studying it more, or that I will never benefit from it, it’s that at the current time I didn’t feel I could gain more from studying it further. I still love to take photographs and I’m currently working on my own projects, I’ve simply found a way into the art industry through a different route. Also, it means that when I see photographs that have shot work that I wish I’d shot, I can work with them, if they need a curator that is.

Have you got nay tips, advice or resources to share with new graduates? The first thing I would say is that I still have no idea how I passed my degree, it’s not that I think I’m bad at photography, it’s that the grading matrix used to mark our work is definitely not written for us. Therefore, it’s really difficult to fully understand how exactly you can hit all of the right things you need to get a decent grade. So bare that in mind.

 From the series  Cotton Wool  by  Millie Battershill

From the series Cotton Wool by Millie Battershill

My advice to graduates would be things that I didn’t realise upon leaving university. Firstly, if you set yourself a goal to have a specific type of job or to live in a specific place within a year or any amount of time, don’t be disappointed if that doesn’t happen. This doesn’t mean don’t aim for things, just remember there’s no time limit apart from the ones you set yourself. Success really doesn’t happen overnight. 

Secondly, do what you love, not what you think someone else will love. People can tell if there’s no passion in your work. 

And my last piece of advice would be this: don’t stop making things.

What are your aspirations as a curator? I’d love to curate an exhibition which lasts a few weeks and involves audience engagement or includes events of some kind, that’s the aim but I’m mostly just happy working on exhibitions and learning more about my individual process. I’m working on my first curatorial show currently, so my main aim at the moment is ensuring that is a successful as it can be.

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Sophie Barbasch - Fault Line

For the duration of March we were seeking work from photography graduates alongside Loupe Magazine to reward with a collection of prizes and interviews. A lot of time was spent looking through the submissions and decisions were finally made. Here we present you with our second runner-up!

Sophie Barbasch is based in New York and studied for a MFA in photography at the Rhode Island School of Design and a BA in Art and Art History at Brown University. We've interviewed Sophie here about the series Fault Line.


Fault Line is a project I am doing in the small coastal town of Brooklin, Maine. The protagonist is my younger cousin Adam, who lives there. I also photograph my brother, father, and other cousins. I chose the title because a fault line alludes to where the earth splits in an earthquake (a metaphor for a divided family with a complicated history) and also alludes to fault, or blame (I wonder, how does a family support each other, even when things aren't perfect?) My goal is to show the weight we all carry and how we are both connected and isolated from each other.

 Image from the series  Fault Line

Image from the series Fault Line

Can you introduce yourself? What and where did you study? What's your motto? I’m a New York based photographer. I grew up here, and I also lived in Providence where I got my BA at Brown and my MFA at RISD. I don’t know if I have a motto per se, but I think it’s important to laugh as much as possible. In terms of work, I think a lot about how you just have to keep going, always, no matter what!  

Give us an overview of your work. What themes do you like to explore? Regardless of the project I have a preoccupation with the dissolution of structure. In my work, there is usually tension between a desired/expected outcome and an actual/different outcome. I like images because they elude the structure and clarity of language—but even in my text-based projects, I emphasise words that have multiple connotations. I make collections of writing with pieces that undo, or undermine, the other component parts (i.e. there is a building up of meaning, or an argument being made, that is then undone). This undermining of expectation, or structure, is not always negative/nihilistic. It’s just my way of addressing life’s ambiguity.

 Image from the series  Fault Line

Image from the series Fault Line

What encouraged you to submit to the Loupe Magazine and Photograd call for work? Have you got any tips for photographers submitting work for similar opportunities? I really like both Loupe and Photograd so when I saw the call for work I was immediately interested. In terms of tips, I don’t think I’m the right person to ask! I submit to a lot of things, and rejection is almost a daily occurrence. I guess the key is just persistence, as with most things.

How did this series come to the surface? What initially drew you to the coastal town of Brooklin? I have family there so it has always been important to me. I started the project for a few different reasons. I was finishing up grad school with a lot of questions and issues that I felt like I needed to address in my work, and this project seemed to be a good fit. I was getting to know my cousin better as both a person and a photo collaborator and wanted to work more with him. And I had been traveling and moving around a lot in the years prior, which left me wanting to return to a home base of sorts.

 Image from the series  Fault Line

Image from the series Fault Line

Is it important you use your family as characters in your work? What were their thoughts on your ideas? For a while I was trying to address elements of my childhood in my work but the connection wasn’t direct enough. I decided to use my family members and to think of them as characters that inhabit this place and develop over time. It started with a few images that seemed to get at what I was feeling, and then I realised that my cousin Adam was a good protagonist for the project because he seemed to share my experience and outlook. I speak the most to him and my other cousins about the project. Although they are not photographers, they are all artistic (musicians, writers, performers) so it is intuitive to them. I usually have the initial idea, but they help me develop it by improvising in the moment and suggesting other things. They motivate me and collaborate with me.

 Image from the series  Fault Line

Image from the series Fault Line

Where did you final visual influence for Fault LineJo Ann Callis, Andrea Modica, Viviane Sassen, Ingmar Bergman, Collier Schorr, Jo Ann Walters.

As family and relationships continue to evolve, do you think you can ever call this series complete? I don’t think it will ever be complete. I think the longer you work on a project, the harder it gets—the more complex things get. This mirrors reality and relationships. You have to examine more of yourself and show more of others. I think of this series in chapters. Even when one chapter ends, there is another beginning.

 Image from the series  Fault Line

Image from the series Fault Line

What are your future plans? I’m currently working on a project about the construction of a railroad in Brazil. As for the future future—I’m not sure! Projects tend to lead into each other, but sometimes it’s hard to know what it is until it’s almost finished.

Lorenza Demata - It all started when some of us left the country

For the duration of March we were seeking work from photography graduates alongside Loupe Magazine to reward with a collection of prizes and interviews. A lot of time was spent looking through the submissions and decisions were finally made. We're really pleased to present here the first runners-up interview.

Lorenza Demata is a photographer and visual artist originally from Italy who studied for an MA in Photography at London College of Communication. We've interviewed Lorenza here about the series It all started when some of us left the country.


It is estimated that expatriates constitute approximately 40% of London population.
At the same time, almost 50% of the total consumption of food resources relies on the importation of fruit and vegetables from other countries.


This project is an investigation of the notion of identity in the contemporary migratory context.
The displacement of human resources is explored through a visual analogy with imported fruit and vegetables. By creating this parallel relation between people and food commodities, Lorenza aims to unveil the process of redefining individual identity that often takes place in the experience of expatriates.
The photographic series and the book ask the viewer to critically reflect on the role of the human workforce in the political context of global migration.

 From the photobook  It all started when some of us left the country - I

From the photobook It all started when some of us left the country - I

Can you introduce yourself? What and where did you study? My name is Lorenza (Lori) and I am a photographer and visual artist based in London. I come from Florence, Italy, where I first graduated in International Cooperation and Conflict Management. After my first BA, I studied Photography for three years at Fondazione Studio Marangoni in Florence, until September 2016. Then I moved to London to attend the MA in Photography at London College of Communication. I recently graduated and I am now working as a freelance photographer in London.

 From the series  It all started when some of us left the country

From the series It all started when some of us left the country

Give us an overview of your work. What themes do you like to explore? Because of my multidisciplinary background, the content of my works is somehow always linked to social and political issues and it investigates themes related to the ideas of identity and culture. In my latest works, I have been particularly interested in the processes that influence and change the concept of cultural identity in the contemporary globalised context.

I usually address these concepts through portrait and staged photography, by subverting and experimenting different approaches. As a result, I would say that my practice sits between documentary and conceptual photography.

 From the photobook  It all started when some of us left the country - I

From the photobook It all started when some of us left the country - I

What encouraged you to submit to the Loupe Magazine and Photograd call for work? Have you got any tips for photographers submitting work for similar opportunities? I usually try to apply to as many open calls as I can. I think these kind of calls are a good opportunity to show work, as well as to get feedback and responses. It is useful to always challenge ourselves and to confront our work with others. Accepting feedback and criticism is not always easy. But taking into account constructive suggestions can make you understand how complete your work is and it can contribute to make positive improvements.

How did this series come to the surface? Why did you decide to investigate identity in the contemporary migratory context through the use of photography? When I started my MA in London I wanted to investigate a theme that could be somehow close to my personal experience. I started wondering to what extent cultural identity changes when we move from our country of origin to another. I have also been interested in the process of commodification of the foreign human workforce in general and in particular in London.  

 From the photobook  It all started when some of us left the country - I

From the photobook It all started when some of us left the country - I

I think it is important to reflect on identity and cultural issues in this place and in this historical moment.

Almost half of the population of London is constituted by people from other countries. While gathering data for my theoretical research process, I also found out that a large amount - approximately 50% - of the food commodities we consume in the UK is imported from somewhere else. By visually connecting expatriates to imported vegetables and fruit, I want people to reflect on how much a country relies on the global importation and migration, as well as on the role of foreign people in this context. 

 From the series  It all started when some of us left the country

From the series It all started when some of us left the country

The outcome of It all started when some of us left the country is a photobook. Describe your book and explain why you executed your work in this way. The diptychs are usually installed in exhibitions as a series of booklets, which aim to recall the scale of a passport. 

The other part of the project It all started when some of us left the country - I is in the form of a book. In this section, I am investigating the concept of cultural adaptation by confronting a specific fruit with a personal story. As a result, the book mixes different visual inputs, such as screenshots, graphics, manipulated archival material and photographs.

Why have you cut out the faces in your portraits? The face is one of the main elements which defines the identity of a person. It is, I would say, indexical of the existence of the subject, and this is particularly evident in identity documents. 

 From the series  It all started when some of us left the country

From the series It all started when some of us left the country

I chose not to show the face to reflect on the concepts of displaced identity and of absence. The size of the white square also recalls the photos that are used for official documents.

I think my aim is to underline how it is challenging to define ourselves culturally and individually.

Tell us about the accompanying pieces of fruit in your images. How have you linked fruit and portraits together? For the still life photos I gathered data about the most imported fruit and vegetables. Every piece is paired with the portrait according to the colours. I did not want to link the food with the subject on the basis of the same nationality. This way I want to enhance the concept of displacement and of distance of commodities and people. Furthermore, I mean to underline how the movement of goods and human migrations are global, by going beyond national borders.

 From the series  It all started when some of us left the country

From the series It all started when some of us left the country

What are your future plans? At the moment, I am going on with this project and with the specific fruits and stories. In the future, I would like to investigate the social and cultural relationship between expatriates and locals. I also want to analyse some form of local cultural ‘resistance’ in the economic context, either in London or somewhere else.