A series of exhibitions will be taking over Bristol’s high street this September, telling the stories of the city and its communities through the work of Bristol-based and international photographers. Organised by Bristol Photo Festival, DREAMLINES: Picturing Bristol High Streets exhibitions will be running in various locations around Bristol from 9 – 17 September 2023, including the work by Taylor Wessing Photo Portrait Prize winner, Clementine Schneidermann.
From Bristol Photo Festival, August 2023:
The stories of Bristol’s high streets and the communities who inhabit them are being told in collaboration with leading Bristol-based and international photographers this autumn. The photographers have worked alongside a range of communities and businesses including the nearly 100-year old Bakers Corner, Shirehampton Men’s Social Club, Filton Avenue’s foodbank, the Shire Stitchers textile club, a young mums group in Stapleton Road and Two Mile Hill’s Salvation Army brass band.
Over two weekends in September, the results of the collaborations will be on display in a series of one day exhibitions in the high streets in which they were made.
Photographers from Bristol, or those with strong ties to the city— including Khali Ackford, Michael Alberry, Sebastian Bruno, Jade Carr-Daley, Mohamed Hassan, Chris Hoare, Kirsty MacKay and Clementine Schneidermann—were commissioned to co-create work across Bristol’s historic high streets. Their images have been created in collaboration with writers, facilitators and the communities which they depict.
The results of their collective work will go on display in a series of public exhibitions across four of the high streets—Filton Avenue, Shirehampton, Stapleton Rd and Two Mile Hill—across two weekends in September 2023.
Bristol Photo Festival have also additional workshops and other activities in Church Road, Filwood Broadway, Stockwood, Brislington and East Street.
DREAMLINES: Picturing Bristol High Streets is organised by Bristol Photo Festival which will return to the city in 2024. The project is funded by Historic England as part of its four-year programme of cultural activity celebrating England’s high streets. It is also one of the activities under the City Centre and High Streets Recovery and Renewal programme, funded by Bristol City Council and the West of England Combined Authority’s Love our High Streets project.
DREAMLINES: Picturing Bristol High Streets Exhibitions
Chris Hoare (Shirehampton)
9 September 2023
After coming across a photograph of Shirehampton Men’s Social Club taken in 1951, Chris felt compelled to create a record of the club today in order to better understand how Shirehampton has changed over the last 70 years. He has collaborated with the club to create contemporary portraits of its members.
Chris has also spent time making portraits along Shirehampton High Street, at times working candidly, engaging quickly with passers-by, and at other times he has set up a temporary studio. Collectively, his photographs illustrate Shirehampton as a living community that continues to evolve and adapt as circumstances change.
Clementine Schneidermann (Shirehampton)
9 September 2023
Clementine has been collaborating with local textiles group the Shire Stitchers. The process began with Clementine creating portraits of group members. These photographs are being used as the basis for a series of new quilts. When viewed collectively, these quilts document the many women who call Shirehampton home.
Jade Carr-Daley (Stapleton Road)
10 September 2023
Jade Carr-Daley joined a group for young mothers that meets regularly on Stapleton Road to create a series of portraits as part of her ongoing exploration of Black motherhood. Her work is grounded in a desire to increase the visibility of women of colour, creating a sense of community between those with shared experiences of navigating motherhood and the changes it brings.
Jade has been collaborating with some of the historic businesses of Stapleton Road, including R Jenkins Butchers, which opened nearly 30 years ago.
Mohamed Hassan (Stapleton Road)
10 September 2023
Mohamed has been collaborating with communities along Stapleton Road, creating a contemporary portrait of the neighbourhood. His process has involved both street portraiture— conducted during Eid celebrations—as well as organised sittings, which offered a space for reflection. In some instances, participants have annotated their images, adding an additional voice to the process.
Khali Ackford (Two Mile Hill)
16 September 2023
Khali has been working to explore the everyday hidden heritage in Two Mile Hill where many businesses have historic roots including Bakers Corner which has been in place for nearly 100 years and The Nylon Shop, a haberdashers operating for over 60 years as well as engaging with pupils from Two Mile Hill Primary School.
Sebastian Bruno (Two Mile Hill)
16 September 2023
Sebastian met with current members of the local Salvation Army Church, to re-stage the historic brass band parade which would bring together 10,000 local church members in the 1920s. On 10 July the band set off from the church along Two Mile Hill Road for the first time in recent memory, whilst Sebastian documented the parade.
Sebastian also embarked on a long-term collaboration with participants from The Hive, a local centre for adults with autism and learning disabilities. Through a series of workshops, the group enacted scenes from historic films that had been shown at the long-closed Kingsway Cinema. The group took the resulting photographs and painted over them, to create a series of experimental portraits.
Michael Alberry (Filton Avenue)
17 September 2023
Photographer Michael Alberry dedicated his time to walking in Filton, covering high streets, side streets, parks and informal public spaces. Walking, necessitates slowing down, moving at a pace that allows for surprise encounters. Through this process, he has created a contemporary portrait of Filton today and the many people that call this place home.
Alongside this work, Michael has been working with students from Filton Primary School to explore the idea of monuments. The process began by asking, what do we choose to remember, and what do we often forget? And what would it mean to create monuments to remember seemingly every day experiences? The students created monuments to waste collection, friendship, peace, falling.
Kirsty Mackay (Filton Avenue)
17 September 2023
Kirsty Mackay has continued her long-term work of the impact on the cost of living crisis on local communities. She began by interviewing local food bank clients, before utilising their stories to create a new body of photographic work.
“I wanted to get peoples’ experiences and their voices out there into the public domain. So I wrote their words across the high street on bus shelters and across the pavements. It is an imperfect, but urgent response.” – Kirsty Mackay
Alejandro Acin, Director of Bristol Photo Festival says, “Through this project Bristol Photo Festival has established a dialogue between over 20 community groups and 14 artists across the city, collectively building a contemporary portrait of Bristol. As a festival, we are committed to an idea of the high street as living cultural space lying at the heart of every community. This project has confirmed the potential and demand for this vision; one where local communities and leading artists work together to explore what it means to live together today.”
DREAMLINES: Picturing Bristol High Streets
High Street exhibitions in Bristol from 9 – 17 September 2023
Full schedule of events at highstreets.bristolphotofestival.org
Exhibition venues and timings
2pm Opening venue – Ruby Jeans (Chris Hoare)
Shirehampton Public Hall (Clementine Schneidermann)
Working Men’s Club – (Chris Hoare)
Closing Venue – Methodist Church (Film screening)
2pm Opening venue – SPACE 238 (Jade Carr-Daley)
R Jenkins Butchers (Jade Carr-Daley)
Kora Bristol Association – (Mohamed Hassan)
Closing Venue – Afghan Tasty Corner (Mohamed Hassan)
Two Mile Hill
2pm Opening venue – Cake My Day (Sebastian Bruno)
The Nylon Shop (Khali Ackford)
Bakers Corner (Khali Ackford)
Public display near Salvation Army (Sebastian Bruno)
Closing Venue – The Hive (Sebastian Bruno)
2pm Opening venue – Horfield Library Garden (Michael Alberry)
Public display across Filton Avenue Lampposts (Kirsty Mackay)
Public display across Filton Avenue Lampposts (Michael Alberry)
Closing Venue – Ebenezer Church (Michael Alberry)
DREAMLINES: Picturing Bristol High Streets is funded by Historic England and Bristol City Council.
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