An exhibition of arrestingly beautiful photographs will be on display at Wollongong Central this May, as part of the national Head On Photo Festival 2017. Here, There & Everywhere features photos from three separate and distinct projects, all underpinned by the narratives of locals and those from further afield.
Here, There & Everywhere focuses on people and places in everyday situations – from celebrities to anonymous subjects – and invites a deeper reflection on their lives from viewers.
Acclaimed Australian photographer Stephen Dupont’s ongoing photographic series – The Australians – studies artists and well-known community figures from Wollongong and its surrounds, including David Field (actor), Anthony Mundine (boxer), and Ben Quilty (artist). His work references the history of early portraiture – marked by the backdrop of a white sheet and often constrictive and exclusive in its outlook – but then expands upon the traditional frame by exposing life beyond the sheet edges. The result is an inclusive and subjective viewpoint, still perfectly captured in 35mm black and white film, from which viewers can draw their own conclusions about modern-day Australian society.
Dream Summer saw Australian documentary photographer and artist Tom Williams spend time on the road and in his hometown of Wollongong, swapping his professional equipment for a rudimentary plastic-lens camera and his keen eye for a great shot. At the start of summer 2016, Williams abandoned his usual practice of projects involving accuracy and research, and began taking spontaneous photographs of strangers. The resulting images are as unpredictable and engaging as the unfolding of life itself.
Finally, the Head On Portrait Prize Retrospective, which was established in 2004, gives the public and photographers (both emerging and established) the opportunity to view and exhibit high-quality photographic portraits. A panel of judges is guided by the simple criteria of images that encapsulate the personality of the sitter and invite an emotional response from the viewer. This retrospective features all of the winners, plus some of the best entries, from 2004 to 2016.
Here, There & Everywhere will be complemented by free masterclasses with the exhibition’s principal photographers. On 13 May, Tom Williams will conduct a masterclass for beginner to intermediate photographers, entitled ‘Figure and Ground: the photographic portrait in natural light’, which will examine the involvement of context, composition, and the use of light. On 20 May, Stephen Dupont will inspire and inform with his masterclass, where he shares a selection of his own works and the stories behind them, then constructively critiques participants’ work, with discussions about photographic quality, editing and ideas.
Here, There & Everywhere has been curated and produced by aMBUSH Gallery and presented with Wollongong Central – it also represents an exciting milestone, being the first time the Head On Photo Festival has been brought to the Wollongong region.
It will be exhibited free of charge to the public on Level 2, Gateway Building, at Wollongong Central from the 5th-31st of May and will be open during centre trading hours.
Visit www.wollongongcentral.com.au for more information, and look for Wollongong Central and aMBUSH Gallery on Facebook and Instagram for updates.
Stephen Dupont, Tom Williams