This year’s Select/21 includes work by seven exhibitors who were chosen from Salon 2019 and Salon 2021. Much of the work that they are showing here is a development of earlier work and has been made with the support of Photofusion. Each of these artists has extended their practice, pushing technical, personal or conceptual boundaries and moving forward, despite the difficulties that they might have encountered over the last 18 months.
Boundaries are deliberately challenged in the work of Tamsin Green and Steve Pill. Green’s deconstructed wall-mounted books blur categorisation between geology, archaeology, photography and text, whilst Pill’s colour hand-prints offer the viewer a nuanced layered approach to conventional street photography.
In contrast, works by Mathushaa Sagthidas and Hayleigh Longman focus on the bonds of human relationships. Sagthidas’s presentation of images of Sri Lankan family rituals alongside personal family archival material presents the complexity and richness of her background. Longman’s work, made on the first day after the lockdown in 2020, reveals the freedom and joy felt by two brothers as they were able to spend time together in nature once again.
Process and making are fundamental to the works of Mandy Williams whose empty seascapes on coloured acrylic reflect feelings of memory and loss seen through the scratched surfaces of seaside shelters and windows in Worthing, where she grew up. Jannine Smith’s nocturnal petrol stations, each one made on Tungsten film using a combination of natural and artificial light, with just one take, convey the desolation and timelessness of these everyday structures.
Finally, Maria Ahmed’s work interrogates the language of photography from its earliest processes to the digital present using collage, stills and moving images from a huge variety of sources. Her work is presented within its own space, allowing the viewer an opportunity to immerse themselves in the complex, layered universe of contrasting and colliding imagery that she has collated and created.