Photography Exhibition in London - Philip Kirk
Submitted to: Art 
Posted: April 13 2008


Philip Kirk


Preview: January 24 4pm – 8pm

Exhibition Dates: January 25 – March 1

Philip Kirk started studying photography because he thought his images could change the world.

Kirk says:

“I had some naïve ideas of going off to Africa and bringing back images of starving children that would change everything. I soon realised that is not the way the world works.”

Since then his aims have become a bit more modest but, as happens, disillusion turned to cynicism:

“ I have a sneaking suspicion that there is no way of ordering society that will not crap on at least one part of that society”

But what has all that got to do with the moody, luminous, nightscapes Kirk produces? They don’t seem to have much to do with changing the world.

“Through my work I hope to gain an experience of the world that is not mediated by images, but of personal encounters whilst encouraging others to do the same, all the time whispering ‘you can do this too.’”

Many of the images have involved Kirk undertaking his own minor acts of rebellion; entering illegally, climbing over walls and fences, or in through windows in the dead of night, or picking locks.

His title for his work is “Wanderer,” inspired by Caspar David Friedrich’s painting “The Wanderer Amidst a Sea of Mists”. Like those romantic landscape paintings, traditional landscape photography can separate the viewer from the image. Kirk aims to reconnect the viewer, sometimes by placing a hooded figure in the photograph, putting back an abstract person in his depopulated world.

Kirk still wants to change the world. He participates in, and trains others in, non-violent activism all around the globe.

With photography Kirk started out thinking he was going to shock society into change by showing images of the starving. That has matured into a desire to unsettle. The images are attractive but by showing us civilsation from the outside he’s trying to encourage us to see our world in new ways; to rebel against the ordered pre-packaged world around us.

Sam Green of Rathbone says:

“For Rathbone’s second show we’re continuing showing the work of emerging photographers with a unique vision. As 2008 develops expect to see more established visions in the gallery alongside our collection of classic photography and a developing range of cards and books."

For more information/images for publication please contact:

Sam Green / Juliette Atkinson

T: 020 7636 6699

M: 07967 688406

Opening hours: Tuesday – Friday 11am – 6:30pm

Saturday 10:30 – 5:30pm


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    Contact Information:
    Sam Green
    42 Windmill StreetW1T 2JZ
    020 7636 6699  

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