Blog Archive

20 03 2015

Still Life


Photographs by Stuart Whipps

Library of Birmingham recently accessioned a new series of photographs by Stuart Whipps. The 25 prints and accompanying publication resulted from a residency Whipps undertook at the John Taylor Hospice, once the home of the important photographer and politician Sir Benjamin Stone (1838-1914).

Whipps responded to a series of images in the Stone Collection in which the photographer documented the rooms and objects decorating his house. During an 18 month residency established by the Ikon Gallery and funded by the Baring Foundation, Whipps interviewed people receiving palliative carer, their families and hospice staff in their homes. The work resulted in an audio-visual work shown at Ikon Gallery in 2013 based around the images these images which embodied both and present and which explored themes of isolation, separation and transition.

The library continues to build up its holdings of British photographs from the 1970s-80s with the purchase of 61 photographs by John Curno. The acquisition includes his ROOFTOPS series (1980) and BRIMHAM ROCKS (1981), a personal study of the unusual sandstone (Millstone Grit) structures of Brimham Rocks in North Yorkshire.

The rooftop series and a series of seascapes and landscapes formed Curno’s first solo exhibition at Impressions Gallery (York) in 1982. The Brimham Rock series was first exhibited at Open Eye Gallery (Liverpool) in 1983.

John Curno, Brimham Rocks,c1982

John Curno, Brimham Rocks,c1982


Internationally acclaimed photographer, Brian Griffin, has added three of his major exhibitions to the substantial existing collection of his work held by the Library of Birmingham.

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The Val Williams Archive goes to the Library of Birmingham

The Val Williams Archive is to become part of the nationally and internationally significant photography collections at the new Library of Birmingham. The archive consists of papers, letters, audiotapes, video, manuscripts, published material, invitations, posters, press cuttings and research materials documenting the work of one of the UK’s most important curators and writers on photography.

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