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Cuban Notebook – Photographs by Larry Herman

Brady Arts Centre 1 - 30 Oct 18

October. After a long summer of sun and arts, we are looking forward to a new season of arts, albeit with a little less sun. And October is a great month for photographers, because it’s Photomonth. Started in 2001, Photomonth has established itself as one of the largest festivals in the UK, celebrating photography in galleries and venues across East London. The rich and diverse programme includes exhibitions, events, artists talks, seminars, etc. The festival brings to a larger audience the freshness and inspiration of contemporary photography, giving emerging artists the opportunity to exhibit alongside internationally renowned photographers, in traditional and less traditional spaces. A visit to Photomonth is a must for anybody interested in engaging in photography, but also a great inspiration for visual artists working in all the other media. There is one exhibition I’m particularly looking forward to: Cuban Notebook, at the Brady Arts Centre. Social documentary photographer Larry Herman spent four years (2012 – 2016) documenting the working lives of Cubans, with the assistance of the Confederation of Cuban Workers .The 45 photographs exhibited here are part of a much larger portfolio in the permanent archive of the Confederacion de Trabajadores de Cubanos in Havana. The entire portfolio was first shown in a 2017 Mayday exhibition in Havana. This version of Cuban Notebook opened in October 2017 at Ruskin College, Oxford, and is now touring the United Kingdom. After spending the first quarter of his life in New York, Herman moved to Britain in 1968, and worked for a time as a photographer in Fleet Street. But he wasn’t satisfied with documenting news events, he wanted to dig deeper, and see what lay behind them. Over the decades, Herman has engaged in a number of long term projects, one of them, Waged London, spanned over 12 years. The projects usually centre around people and their work life, extending to domestic environments and social issues. The photographer’s approach is to spend less time photographing and more talking to people, establishing a rapport, learning about them. Larry Herman’s photographs tell a whole story in one image, the expressions of his subjects, the environment, clothes, spontaneous composition. We can imagine all the conversations that lead to that shot which captures everything. The choice of using only B&W adds depth and timelessness to the narrative. Come along on Thursday 25 October at 7pm for a Q&A with Dr Noni Stacey, photo-historian and to meet the artist. Larry Herman's portfolios are collected by museums in several countries. In the UK, the Museum of London, National Galleries of Scotland, Tate Britain, and the Victoria & Albert Museum, among others.

First published on the East Finchley Open Artists October 2018 Newsletter - Click HERE to subscribe to the newsletter.

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