Study visit – TPG New Talent 19 – The Photographers Gallery

TGP New Talent 19


This fascinating exhibition at the Photographers Gallery is a showcase for eight artists selected by Jim Goldberg for the inaugural TPG New Talent (TNT) mentoring programme. The chosen artists exhibit a varied approach to both the medium of photography and to the presentation of the work itself. The work ranges from documentary, collage, 3 dimensional pieces and found imagery. The names of the artists in the show are Rhiannon Adam (b.1985, Ireland), Chiara Avagliano (b.1988, Italy), Alberto Feijóo (b. 1985, Spain), Adama Jalloh (b. 1993, UK), Seungwon Jung (b. 1992, South Korea), Alice Myers (b. 1986, UK), Giovanna Petrocchi (b. 1988, Italy) and Miguel Proença (b. 1984, Portugal). After the exhibition these lucky few will receive twelve months of individual mentoring working with The Photographers Gallery curators.


Before visiting the TGP New Talent 19 exhibtion I did I bit of research on the featured photographers but have to admit I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I was very pleasantly surprised when I entered the fifth floor of The Photographers Gallery. I was immediately impressed by the display of Riannon Adam and her work made in the Pitcain islands. Also the unusual backdrop for Alberto Feijóo’s work was very stimulating. A big reason for visiting this exhibition was to inspire me to try new display techniques for my own exhibition and these young talents did not disappoint with their experimental approach.

Most of the artists in the show experimented with interesting and innovative display techniques. Rhiannon Adam’s display was notable for its use of archive material (newspaper clippings), found imagery and pictures made using expired Polaroid film (which I loved). Chiara Avagliano and Alberto Feijóo combined 2 dimensional imagery with 3 dimensional  pieces of work. Alice Myers used only digital displays (three flat screen televisions) which I thought was a bit risky as there was nothing to immediately capture your attention. Saying that I do like the idea of using digital screens in some way alongside traditional prints. Miguel Proença and Adama Jalloh stuck to the more traditional display of framed photographs arranged in linear or as a grid allowing the pictures to do the talking. Seeing the high quality black and white prints by Jalloh was nice but a bit old fashioned some how. Korean artist Seungwon Jung utilised textiles which although very eye catching, seemed a bit out of stepwith the other works on display.


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How will this exhibition influence my own practice:

One thing that struck me was that many artists were unafraid of mixing colour prints with black and white prints. I remember many years ago someone saying you should never mix colour and black and white prints. This has always stuck with me and I find it hard to not break the ‘rules’. I feel like I would like to mix it up a bit and start making some new work in black and white as well. In this digital age it’s simple to convert colour images to black and white but I would like to also make some ‘pure’ black and white images possible using instant film or with black and white negative film printed in a darkroom.

Another thing that I noticed was that no one printed really big prints, is this a new trend in the photography art world? I found this refreshing as the slightly smaller prints allowed the artists to include other pieces already mentioned and the placement of the prints could be more unpredictable. This has taken the pressure off me slightly to make my prints as big as possible.

This show has given me a lot to think about. Should I include archive material and found imagery? Frames or no frames? Size of prints? Could I include found objects? Should the background be light, dark or even textured I some way? What about a digital screen? Some of the decisions depend on the venue I am using for my display. This was an extremely inspiring exhibition visit for me. I am feeling more excited and less nervous about the prospect of showing my work in public thanks to these talented artists.

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