Futureproof @ Street Level Photoworks

Review by Adam Benmakhlouf | 06 Feb 2015

In the Futureproof mix this year there is a fair whack of portraiture, yet the strongest work comes from the experimental projections of Jane Beran. Beran's work is not immediately obvious in its approach, yet its exploding of photos by projection onto variously deep and protruding surfaces is a clever and simple strategy. Figures are disrupted and stretched around, and a straightforward consumption of the images is disrupted. 

There's also a lot of staged works including Gemma Dagger's four small scale photographs photographs of Maryhill’s People's Group and Community Hall. In these images, the figures in the photographs are moved into different configurations though the light behind them is unchanged. Dressed in what looks like ceremonial white garb, there’s the sense of the choreography of cultic ritual. Barely shifting the camera, there’s something of the diorama about these images.

Craig Gibson bravely exhibits only one A5 photo book, though they are selling well. In this publication, he documents Baptist churches with a sensitive and patient concern for the specific subtleties of the spaces as investigation into the Baptist Church does not allow for any distinguishable faces to feature. One figure plunges another into a previously concealed sunken font. The emphasis is not the wet shirted back or underwater convert but the red floor around them and rolled up carpet. 

One of the most interesting colour explorations comes from Jack Luke’s photographs of the leftovers of the shale oil industry. Heaped and driven over every weekend by motocross bikers, what is left is bright and sculptural. Luke does not conceal his romantic aestheticising of the landscapes, and it’s this same confidently idiosyncratic approach that made for an interesting, and necessarily disparate group show. 

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