Something is stirring below the surface of Birmingham’s art scene. A unique collaboration is being formed. Contact is being made.

During the first two weeks of September 2010 there will be a rare opportunity to explore some new work by seven talented Birmingham photographers. Contact, the exhibition, is a collaboration between The Photography Collective, a newly formed pool of photographic talent for the Midlands, and Birmingham Photospace, which exists to establish a permanent space for photography in Birmingham. Graced by the one-time opportunity to exhibit as a group at Rhubarb East Gallery, Contact is an associate exhibition of the recent Rhubarb-Rhubarb Photography Festival, a highlight of the year in the fine art photography world’s calendar.

About the show
The exhibition was inspired by discussions within the group on the nature of contact, with each of the photographers creating work within their own practice exploring their thoughts on the theme. The variety of styles and formats challenges the viewer to consider how contact is made between objects both animate and inanimate, between the past and present, between analogue and digital and between photographer and subject.

The show is curated by Kathryn Klizsat, the accomplished curator at Light House – the centre for film, video, art and photography in Wolverhampton. Kathryn has put the show together from a larger body of work from emerging talent and established photographers from across the two groups. The result is a diverse and exciting new body of work seen for the first time here in Birmingham.

Contact is the product of two groups introduced to each other by Rhonda Wilson, creative director at Rhubarb-Rhubarb and brought together to create this exhibition. Both The Photography Collective and Birmingham Photospace seek to enhance and develop the West Midlands’ cultural legacy by developing work and providing opportunities for it to be seen and enjoyed by others and in so doing provoking further creativity in the region.

About the artists
The show features work by seven artists from across the region working in a variety of styles and formats. The work showcases the range of creativity in each photographer’s own practice.

Both groups acknowledge the support they have had from Rhubarb-Rhubarb for this exhibition. Matt Murtagh, one of the exhibitors (and core member of Birmingham Photospace), said “It’s an amazing opportunity to work with an internationally renowned organisation which has such a great track record in developing photographers and supporting new work. For me this shows the commitment Rhubarb-Rhubarb has to encouraging creativity in the region.”

The exhibition runs from Friday 3rd September to Saturday 18th September at Rhubarb East in Digbeth, Birmingham. Open Thursdays to Sundays from 11-5, there will be an Artists’ Talk on Thursday 9th September at 6.30pm, where visitors will be invited to make contact with the photographers and to discover more about the stories behind this powerful exhibition.