BPB2008-Memory of Fire


Photo: Ashley Gilbertson


Brighton Photo Biennial 2008:

Memory of Fire, War of Images and Images of War
Curated by Julian Stallabrass

Great exhibition in venues along the south coast of England. Lots of shows with work that made me think about my own work and about the various memories it awakened. Memories of childhood seeing every night images of the Vietnam war, images of a trip through Vietnam last year. The difference in context could not be more pronounced. From a blur of horror to memories of how Vietnam is today: doing very well and people finally free to go about life in the way they see fit (within the boundaries of a communist government). Seeing many war photographs in Vietnam, at memorial sites, of their situation then, than looking around and experiencing their situation now. The Vietnamese show us around: look we have gone through this shit, we survived, we kicked you out, it’s back in our hands now, and we made it work.

Geert van Kesteren: Why Mister, Why? and Baghdad Calling were for me the most interesting. Mix of images of Iraqees, and his own. Also great to see it in a book. Old and new media, images of public and images of western photographer hybrid. Make your own story. http://www.baghdadcalling.org/

Link about recent developments in photojournalism: Brigitte Lardinois, editor of MAGNUM MAGNUM and Senior Research Fellow at the London College of Communication, the University of the Arts wrote an essay for BAGHDAD CALLING about recent developments in photojournalism: http://www.baghdadcalling.org/introEN.html

Hirschhorn’s The Incommensurable Banner shows the mediation process at work. Collection of images that are excluded from the main mass media because they are too graphic… of what a war is like, the damage it does to human beings. A political show as well, seeing how this is managed by the gallery: behind a transparent wall, and the public is guided, warned.



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