TALK: What’s not to like? – Instagram and contemporary photography


Friday 5 October 2018

A talk by three of the most exciting photographers working and living in the UK: Anna Fox, Polly Penrose and Juno Calypso. Listen to each speak for fifteen minutes on their creative lives and work, followed by an audience Q&A.

Subjects will include digital media’s role in the images of the internet age: the positives and the negatives. On social media, women artists can very literally self- represent work in their own free digital galleries. Rather experimentally, the five photographers in the barn – Juno Calypso, Maisie Cousins, Anna Fox (in collaboration with singer Alison Goldfrapp), Polly Penrose and Natalie Krick – were discovered via Instagram accounts, posts or hashtags.

Though Instagram is certainly a new frontier for pioneers of fine art photography, it is imperative to note that the platform’s many detractors have suggested that social media can ruin our experiences: of travel, food, relationships and even art.

Anna Fox began working as a photographer in the early 1980s, emerging as one of the most exciting colour documentary photographers of the time. Fox’s fascinating study of the bizarre as well as the ordinariness of British life resulted in a combination of social observation with highly personalized projects.

After studying Graphic Design at Camberwell College of Arts in London, Polly Penrose went on to have a career in fashion styling. Penrose has been taking self- portraits on a ten-second timer for over a decade. Her pictures focus less on sexuality and female allure, instead retaining the awkward, often beguiling force of the body as an object.

After completing a foundation degree Juno Calypso graduated with a BA in Photography from University of the Arts, London in 2012. In 2015 Calypso spent a week alone at a romantic-themed couples resort in the USA to continue her series of self-portraits. With a suitcase of wigs and lingerie, Calypso posed as a travel writer to gain access to the ostentatiously themed rooms.

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