Tag Archives: Brian Griffin

Photo Stroll – A Night Out in The Black Country with Brian Griffin

© Brian Griffin, Woman Chainmaker, 2010. Archival pigment print. Courtesy of the artist.

From the press release: “Brian Griffin was born in Birmingham in 1948 but spent his childhood in Lye, in the Black Country before departing for Manchester College of Art in 1969 to study photography. He has since gone on to become one of the UK’s most established photographers and is renowned for his portraits of musicians, actors, political figures and the business community. However, growing up in the 50s and 60s in the Black Country, surrounded by industry, has left an indelible impression on the artist, to such an extent, that a new body of work recalls his childhood memories of living amongst the factories on Stocking Street, Lye.

“Inspired by a range of artistic influences including Caravaggio, Sir Stanley Spencer, Otto Dix and religious art, Griffin’s theatrical compositions place his life story on centre stage.

“The Black Country was first exhibited at Collège des Bernardins, Paris. The exhibition has been supported by the Owen Family Trust, Walsall Museums and Galleries Development Trust, Multistory and Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council.”

© Brian Griffin, Tim Newey. Courtesy of the artist.

Today’s post which is also up at the New York Photo Festival 2011 site comes a little later than anticipated as someone cut through my broadband cable and I was disconnected from cyberland. Now back online, here’s a photo stroll from yesterday’s night out to Brian Griffin’s private view of his most personal project to date, The Black Country, which opened today at the New Art Gallery Walsall and runs until 19 June.

Landlord of The Old Swan pub Tim Newey, pictured above, provided a barrel of beer from his brewery and was among the guests at the busy opening. Here’s hoping that the show makes its way across the Atlantic so that others can enjoy Griffin’s exhibition too. For now, here’s a photo stroll taster of what to expect. And, after my last wordy post, today I’ve decided to step back and let the images speak for themselves. To see more…

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Photographer Brian Griffin shoots Rencontres Arles 2010 group portrait – Day 6

© Brian Griffin, Arles 2010. Photo courtesy of the photographer.

There is a tradition at Rencontres Arles where a photograph is taken every year of the festival team as well as those involved in curating and selecting work for the shows. I don’t believe this took place last year but for 2010 and the Year of the Pink Rhino, photographer Brian Griffin was asked to create the group portrait. Griffin, pictured below, will be featured in the next issue of HotShoe (Oct/Nov).

The final image is somewhere (where I don’t know) but the one I have posted above is courtesy of Griffin who sent it to me after the shoot. I am in the bottom right-hand corner of the frame where I was helping to stop the traffic as it sped past the bridge.

At one point, three Tour de France style cyclists went past. “It’s like a Jacques Tati film,” shouted Griffin as the trio pulled up in the middle of the road to see what was going on, unaware that they were in the frame.

Till Monday and a return to some semblance of normality, I leave you with some snippets I grabbed during the morning shoot.

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Spread Some Love and take part in A Photo Student’s Appreciate a Photographer Week

© Miranda Gavin, Dead Roses, Christmas 2009

It may be wet, cold and January but there’s plenty of love in the photography world and it’s time to spread some more around.

I just came across a blog A Photo Student run by James Pomerantz and had to reply to his latest post Appreciate a Photographer Week. James has responded to a new report from Career Cast, Jobs Rated 2010: Ranking 200 Jobs from Best to Worst, by Andrew Strieber. There’s a ranking system for different jobs and points are accrued. As James points out, the job ‘photographer’ comes in at No 126 while ‘photojournalist’ is at No. 189 of 200.  The worst job, at No. 200, is reserved in this report for a Roustabout which is defined as someone who “performs routine physical labor and maintenance on oil rigs and pipelines, both on and off shore”.

When I started out on my photographic journey as a music-mad teen, it was mainly the work of photographers that I came across in newspaper weekend supplements and music papers who inspired me. I would tear out the portraits in New Musical Express or Melody Maker and plaster them on my wall. Album covers were also a great format for photography and I would choose my favourites to display.  At this time, Anton Corbijn, Brian Griffin, Penny Smith (fabulous photo of Paul Simenon from The Clash which was used for the London Calling album) grabbed my interest. Later, I came across Lee Miller, Tina Moddotti, (I was seeking out female role models in photography), Bill Brandt and the Surrealists – all of whom took me on wild visual journeys.

I have commented on the post and will spread some PHOTOGRAPHER LOVE this week. My dedication is to all those photographers and photojournalists who have inspired me and made me think, to the medium that gave me a creative outlet and to photography for leading me to where I am now…