Ice Dance Exhibition opens on May 10th 2013 at Greenwich Gallery, Linear House, Peyton Place, London SE10 8RS. Private View Sat. 11th May 12pm-8.45pm. Rona Campbells Fine Art Photography of ice in Wales is grant aided by Arts Council Wales, and this is it’s fourth exhibition in 2013. “dancing shapes and hints of movement; an ice swan caught in a waterfall, an auditorium of icicle spectators, and a frozen ballet from birth to death, all captured in north Wales where she lives.” Letchworth Comet Press 10.1.2013.
Ten ice poems accompany this exhibition by prizewinning poet, Rona Campbell and the Winter Poetry Competition Prizegiving is on Mon 13th May 6.30-8.30pm. This competition has been created to accompany Ice Dance. The judges are poet & playwright Peter Read, and Aled Lewis Evans, poet and author.
Rona Campbell photographed in the Oriel Wrecsam at her photography exhibition Ice Dance. Twenty five photographs are exhibited of ice, in Welsh rivers and waterfalls, on windows, and in blocks of ice. They show the extrodinary shapes, textures, and colour variety found in ice; for example, the ice on Llyn Bran, being driven by the wind looks like a stingray, and another blue ice formation, is likened to a Monet painting, and is titled Monet on Ice. The dendrite ice formations photographed one morning on Rona’s kitchen windows are quite beautiful. As the sun broke through and melted the ice, vivid colours from the garden appeared, looking as if paint had been daubed in reds and greens in the backround. Many of these photographs look like paintings.
At times it is hard to believe they are ice, but very little has been digitally altered. They are not abstract, and are still recognisable as ice, but not as ice is normal seen. This style of photography is called Concrete Photography, first coined by German photographers, circa 1930’s. This is also an exhibition of Rona’s poems, written about her adventures photographing ice, always in freezing conditions, and at the end of the day always wet from crawling under overhanging river banks, or sitting in the snow taking close up shots.
“I love the beauty and silence, and the solitude winter imposes in these isolated areas.”
‘Silent Night,’ is a poem written at the end of such a photo shoot, the Black Ice House, as it is first named, is an abandoned farmhouse, crouching in the frozen rushes; bleak, and haunted by silence, as the silent night itself approaches, and knocks on its door. The road home is filling up with snow; “one last shot,” she thinks. Is this the photographer’s obsession? Then she hears a phantom voice warning her that she is at risk, and must leave, or?
There will be a performance of Rona reading the Ice Dance poems in October at Oriel Wrecsam. Everybody is welcome to share with her the memories of this project. The exhibition closes on October 27th 2012, and then goes to Letchworth Arts Center, in Hertfordshire, opening 7th January, private view 11th January until 1st February 2013.
“the quality of their beauty, goodness and truth lie proven in the photographs themselves and should be directly recognizable in their works, their ontology, appearance and history,” says Gottfried Jager: Concrete Photography (Version 01.08.2004)
“In the early 1970’s Germany began to foster a true appreciation of the pictorial achievements and variety of (concrete) photography by turning it into an academic discipline….when photographs were still regarded as intruders…illegitimate, (Bourdieu 1981), in particular their abstract and concrete tendencies.”
In establishing Ice Dance Photographs as concrete photography I am interested in (Gottfried Jager’s) comments found on concrete-photography.org generated: 18May, 2012. At first I called Ice Dance photographs abstract but since talking with John McClenaghen, at Glydwr University at our meeting on 18 May, 2012 Wrexham, and with Stuart Cunning, head of Creative Industries, I am now of the opinion that they are concrete photographs.
I would be most interested in reading other views on Concrete Photography and in particular Ice Dance’s place in Concrete Photography today.
After a visit to London on May 16th I was offered an exhibition space for my Ice Dance Photographs in May 2013. The Linear House Gallery, Peyton Place, London SE10 8RS was formerly known as The Viewfinder Gallery.