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William Arnold Tides exhibition

Posted by An Tobar and Mull Theatre




27/05/2023 10:00 - 13/08/2023 18:00


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"During the months of July and August the population of Cornwall doubles, a frenzy of holiday lets, campsite bookings, good seafood, bad seafood, surf themed jollity, Cornish piskies, pirates and miners – Poldark. Public services and infrastructure strained in the quiet times buckle and year-round dwellers grumble at traffic jams and emmets’ attitudes to social distancing ... then the tide recedes."  

Photographer William Arnold is interested in the layers of human and natural history that comprise the making of the landscape, and the role played by the photograph in documenting time and change—the subjective and objective politics of places and their histories.  

His strange and extraordinary photographs of popular beaches in high summer Cornwall offer an unsettling invitation to consider the dangers of fluctuating tides in a changeable climate. These images are photographed using continuous exposures of 90 minutes - preserving sunbathers as ethereal traces, layered with the windbreaks, towels and stranded paddleboards marking a daily beach archaeology. Like much of Arnold's work these images cleverly utilise photographic techniques to expand and hold time - representing more than a fleeting moment and asking us to think deeply about what is being recorded. 

This series is presented alongside his new publication Sunspots and his beautiful prints Holdfast produced directly from seaweed specimens using a process of projection onto photographic paper. Together these works show the range of his exciting experimental and conceptual approach to documentary photography.  

An Tobar Gallery, Argyll Terrace, Tobermory, PA75 6PB,

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