Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

Art of Arrangement – still life photography

An exhibition, currently in Bath about still life photography.

“The National Media Museum has wanted to make an exhibition on still lifes for a long time,” says Brian Liddy, the museum’s curator of collections access. “It’s a classic genre but it hasn’t been addressed for a while. I think people have forgotten how interesting it is – old-fashioned photographs of food and flowers shot against a flat background might sound boring, but the roots of the genre are in 17th century Dutch painting and are all about death, mortality, and the transitory nature of earthly pleasures. Still lifes may take seemingly simple subjects, but they deal with some of the great questions of art.”

Art of Arrangement: Photography and the Still Life Tradition is on show at The Holburne Museum in Bath until 07 May.

Still life with ivory tankard and fruit, about 1860. Roger Fenton.
The Royal Photographic Society Collection at the National Media Museum.

Art of Arrangement

11/2/12 – 7/5/12

Art of Arrangement: Photography and the Still Life Tradition
11 February to 7 May 2012
Admission £6.50 / Concessions

Art of Arrangement: Photography and the Still Life Tradition is a visually arresting exhibition organised in partnership with the National Media Museum, it surveys the many ways in which photographers have explored still life.

FULL DETAILS FROM The  Holbourne Museum

There is a review of the exhibition in the Independent by Adrian Hamilton

Photography and painting have always looked over their shoulder at the other. There is barely a show of a modern artist – viz David Hockney, Lucian Freud and Gerhard Richter – which hasn’t a description of how the artist has set out to prove that painting can reach the parts that photography does not dare to go.

But then photographers have, since the beginning a century and a half ago, just as consciously sought to set themselves up to challenge and to surpass traditional painting. It’s a theme currently explored by the Holburne Museum in Bath in an intriguing show of photographic still life. Right at the start, Henry Fox Talbot, the founder of the new medium numbered it as a genre where photography could and should show its worth. It’s still going strong.”.…MORE

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