Friday, 30 October 2009

Jane Bown

If you read The Observer you’ll know about Jane Bown. If you don’t, then let me tell you a little.

Jane is a photographer whose work first appeared in that newspaper in 1949. Until very recently she still did occasional assignments for the paper even though she is now in her mid 80’s. She is probably best known now for her portraiture but her work over the decades has covered all fields, all types of news stories. She works almost exclusively in black and white, eschews modern technology, still working with a Rolleiflex and rolls of film.

Jane has donated the entire collection of her life’s work to The Scott Trust (which owns the two newspapers) and it is now archived at their new home. It is a huge collection, curated by Luke Dodd, who gave a most interesting talk last night to tie-in with the publication of a new collection of her work Exposures. A large exhibition of her work is on display at the offices of The Guardian and Observer at Kings Place, 90 York Way, London.

The exhibition runs until 21st November. Luke Dodd will be talking again about Jane’s work next Monday 2nd – if you can make it it is good to hear Luke’s talk and then view the photographs. If you can’t get to the exhibition do watch this video report by Nicholas Glass for Channel 4 News – very sweet, very moving.

Additionally, there is a wealth of background to Jane and her work here.

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