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Annual Photography Exhibition

by on 12 April 2019

Concentrated Imagination of Observation

Annual Photography Exhibition 2019

Richmond and Twickenham Photographic Society at Landmark Arts Centre, Teddington until 22nd April

Review by Diana Bucknall

The Landmark Arts Centre is situated in the towering remains of part of a French Gothic church, the ‘cathedral of the Thames Valley’, formerly St Alban the Martyr, once ruined, but patiently and laboriously restored. It is now a thriving arts venue. Until the 22nd April the Richmond and Twickenham Photographic Society is staging its annual photography exhibition.

Of the 150 members, 63 have chosen a theme and been allotted a panel on which to hang their work. Some are displaying panels of images which recently gained them distinctions with the Royal Photographic Society.

RTPh S Poppies

Poppies at the Tower by James Kirkland

It is interesting to step into these differing scenarios and see the world through different eyes. To focus on the elegant curve of an Art Deco staircase and, then by another member, the beautiful upward spiralling staircase in the Queen’s House in Greenwich, or another of white sandstone steps fading into a hazy Mediterranean mist. There are photographs of grand architectural buildings on the Isle of Dogs, street art in Shoreditch and a small white walled church on the shores of a distant loch.

RTPhS Chiswick Prk

Chiswick Park, by John Penberthy

We are taken on safari and gaze into the eyes of a lion and come too near to a rhino even with a long lens from a Land Rover for my liking. There are flights of swans and a scattering of landing flamingo, a huddled kestrel, an egret in a tree and several stages of an iridescent kingfisher catching and eating a fish which must surely be bigger than itself.

The unnerving stare of owls catches the attention, the downward sweep of its wings rendering one owl into a feathery ball. Equally unnerving are hooded Spanish Paschal penitents seeking absolution.

RTPhS Semi-Circles

Glasshouse Semi Circles by John Penberthy

For balm to the senses there are early morning mists rising over dewy meadows, the brume lifting from seashore creeks and, gazing out to sea, towering craggy protuberances dotting the view to the distant horizon.

There are portraits of many kinds, some posed and some natural. One set of photographs of native African women showed them relaxed and smiling, certain in their trust of the photographer. Others showed Indian men working at their various trades. There were theatrical portraits, many of dancers and behind the scene sets.

RTPhS Shadow Dancers

Shadow Dancers by Jay Charnock

Digital photography has afforded many differing techniques, photoshopping allows manipulation of the image, special papers produce varying results, the framing and presentation of the prints has an effect too. Images of leaves taken with an infrared lens in the plant house in Kew are particularly beautiful. Huge patience is needed for the macro shots of insects showing great detail and there is one of a lovely hairy bumble bee taken on its pollen-laden flight.

Many of the members of the photographic society are of more mature years but a promising youngster Amy aged fourteen has a panel of her own showing scenes on her allotment, most notably one with a large sunflower in the foreground.

Also showing at the centre are excellent imaginative photographs from pupils at St Catherine’s School for Girls in Twickenham and the Royal Photographic Society’s Visual Art Group’s 2019 Print Exhibition.

Although there are over 500 photographs shown, the exhibition is well laid out with plenty of space to see all the exhibits. Many prints will be available for sale. There are refreshments in the Landmark café for the weary and a feast for the eyes.

Diana Bucknall
April 2019

Photography by James Kirkland, John Penberthy, and Jay Charnock


From → Photography, Reviews

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