Photo Road to 2012: Facing East at Four Corners
The Olympic Games are over, but it doesn’t mean that Londoners have forgotten them. Students of the University of East London have just shared their impressions of the impact of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (the latter still ached) on the communities living in their neighborhood in east London, in a show called Facing East, as a part of the Road to 2012 project.
The exhibition of photos made by students of the Photography and Fine Art courses at the UEL is an outcome of a collaboration between the university and the National Portrait Gallery. 13 apprentices (Joe Bullock, Johanna Lees, Malin Olsson, Sarah Dimmock, Joshua Brown, Denia Kazokou, Oliver Durcan, Roshni Hirani, Anthia Vryoni, Lucas Seidenfaden, Mattias Malk, Nektaria Lampitsi, Greg Hayward) took part in master-classes and portfolio critique sessions led by more experienced photographers Anderson & Low, Jillian Edelstein, Brian Griffin, Emma Hardy, Nadav Kander and Bettina von Zwehl.
As for the learning community proud of its diversity, UEL’s students have shown a surprising unity of style. Despite the variety of topics touched upon (the role of the green urban oasis, rapidly changing landlord-tenant relations, the rituals, volunteers, commuting, broadcasting, Greek legacy and even the gardening and coffee shops) and even the addition of mixed media, the atmosphere of remoteness and solitude as well as repetitive usage of deserted landscapes or interiors occupied by lonely figures, was to be found in each of the series. The individual images, interesting as they were, have been suspended half-way between documentary and artistic.
The impact of the Games on London cannot easily be overlooked, but its full scale will be visible in the future. Similarly, the impact of the Facing East project, and teachings these young artists and photographers received, will be apparent in their mature projects. At present, the outcomes of their work can be witnessed in their natural environment of East London.
Road to 2012: Facing East runs from 9th August until 9th September 2012 at Four Corners, 121 Roman Rd, London E2 0QN. For further information or to book visit the gallery’s website here.
Admission free, Monday – Saturday 10am – 6pm.