In A Different Light showcases recent acquisitions (2015-17) to develop Autograph ABP's Archive and its permanent collection of photography, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Collecting Cultures programme.
Autograph ABP’s Archive and Research Centre has a unique remit: collecting, preserving and disseminating the work of a diverse constituency of contemporary artists and historical image portfolios that address critical questions of cultural identity, human rights, race, representation and difference. These new acquisitions address critical gaps in our current holdings, via three distinct strands:
- representative works by established chroniclers of the ‘Windrush’ generation active in London during the 1960s and 1970s, and other relevant photographs from the period by a constituency of practitioners from different cultural backgrounds
- examples of the earliest 19th century photographs depicting sitters of African, Caribbean and South Asian heritage in British portrait studio during the Victorian era
- a selection of digitised film works by Clovis Salmon aka ‘Sam The Wheels’ to expand the collection’s remit to include moving image in addition to photography
More than 175 works have been acquired for In A Different Light since 2015. These include vintage and modern photographs by Raphael Albert, James Barnor, Armet Francis, Howard Grey, Neil Kenlock, Dennis Morris, Clay Perry, Charlie Phillips; a collection of carte-de-visite, cabinet cards by a wide range of 19th century studio photographers and studios; as well as a portfolio of modern silver gelatin prints made from original glass plate negatives by the London Stereoscopic Company (with the kind support of the Hulton Archive, a division of Getty Images).
With some of these photographers, Autograph ABP’s archive already holds extensive collections of modern prints, and vintage or new works were added to complement existing holdings – as in the case of Raphael Albert, or James Barnor.
In the next archive development phase, particular attention will be paid to acquiring works by female practitioners whose work captures the black experience through fine art and documentary photography from the 1980s onwards. To begin this process, In A Different Light also included the initial acquisition of four portraits by Eileen Perrier, and a portfolio of documentary photographs by Vron Ware (in partnership with Goldsmith College).
A selection of newly acquired works was exhibited the archive display “In A Different Light: New Acquisitions” between 15 November - 2 December 2017 at Autograph ABP, London. A series of Think-Tank and Open House archive events were held during the same period.
All works are made available online on this dedicated website with select audio-visual interviews conducted with artists whose work was acquired for In A Different Light, including a dedicated tool-kit to disseminate knowledge on acquisition processes, collecting photography, editing works, copyright matters as well as printing techniques.
Project Lead: Renée Mussai, Senior Curator and Head of Archive & Research
Project Coordination: Cherelle Sappleton
Website: Irene Fubara-Manuel and Leyla Reynolds
Audio-Visual: Chris Stokes
Special thanks to Zelda Cheatle for negotiating the following acquisitions: Armet Francis, Dennis Morris, Neil Kenlock, and Charlie Phillips.
Many thanks to Lucy Davies at 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning for liaising with Salmon Clovis aka Sam The Wheels on our behalf; Nicky Akehurst who represents Charlie Phillips; Les Back for working in partnership with us on presenting Vron Ware's photographs at Goldsmith College; and to Francis Hodgson for evaluating the acquisitions.
With gratitude to all the artists, and the Hulton Archive, a division of Getty Images, for their support.
In A Different Light is supported by Heritage Lottery Fund.
Autograph ABP is supported using public funding by Arts Council England.