Lecture: Photo London: Mary McCartney
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17 May 2018, 19:00
Ondaatje Wing Theatre
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by Mary McCartney
Photographer Mary McCartney talks to Martin Barnes, Senior Curator of Photgraphs at the V&A, about her portraiture, her move in to motion, her love of dance and what she does best - capturing intimate almost voyeuristic moments. In partnership with Photo London.
Born in London in 1969, Mary McCartney’s photography and motion work has focused on discovering those rare moments of unguarded, emotionally charged intimacy that offers us a new insight in to the subject. Her work has concentrated on the world of portrait and candid reportage photography and is suffused with a deep personal investment that captures the creative chemistry between Mary and her subjects, an approach echoed in her moving image pieces. She responds to her wide variety of subjects as spontaneously as they are studied, thanks to her distinctive style and talent for encapsulating their inspirations, vulnerability, histories and personalities. McCartney’s previous exhibitions and publications include Off Pointe (an in-depth photographic study of the Royal Ballet after hours); The Royal Opera House, London (2004); British Style Observed at the National History Museum, London (2008); and From Where I Stand at the National Portrait Gallery and Michael Hoppen Gallery, London (2010). The two-volume book Monochrome Colour was published by GOST in 2014, with a concurrent exhibition at 3 Grafton Street, London, curated by Pury de Pury. Her last exhibition, Mother Daughter, was at the Gagosian Gallery in NYC (2015). Mary’s most recently published work, Twelfth Night 15.12.13, is a behind-the-scenes study of Mark Rylance as Olivia in Shakespeare’s play and his ensemble cast pre-, during and post-performance, of which he said: ‘The study is a rare peep backstage that Mary has captured so spontaneously’. 2018 will see Mary’s newest project The White Horse, an intimate portrait of rider and horse, published with Rizzoli USA.
Martin Barnes is Senior Curator of Photographs at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, which he joined in 1995 from his previous position at the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool. Martin has curated numerous UK and international touring exhibitions including: Something That I’ll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (2008-10); Beneath the Surface, the inaugural exhibition for Photo London, Somerset House (2015) and the British Pavilion at Dubai Photo (2016). He was the V&A curator for the Museum’s exhibitions including Diane Arbus Revelations (2005-6); Twilight: Photography in the Magic Hour (2006); Shadow Catchers: Camera-less Photography (2010); Figures and Fictions: Contemporary South African Photography (2011); Island Stories: Fifty Years of Photography in Britain (2012-13); Captain Linnaeus Tripe: Photographer of India and Burma, 1854-1860 (2015); Richard Learoyd: Dark Mirror (2015-16) and Paul Strand: Photography and Film for the 20th Century (2016). Martin has acted as academic advisor for the Royal College of Art, the University of Westminster and the University of the Arts London, as Chair of the Kraszna-Krausz Book Awards, Judge of the Prix Pictet, reviewer for The Burlington Magazine and curatorial consultant for Photo London. Martin is an Honorary Life Member of the Royal Photographic Society (RPS) and was presented with the RPS ‘J. Dudley Johnston Award’ in 2013 in recognition of ‘major achievements in the field of photographic criticism and the history of photography, awarded for sustained excellence over a period of time.’