A major exhibition of photographs, made in hundreds of locations across the UK over the last fifteen years, will be exhibited at Impressions Gallery this summer. Selected from The Caravan Gallery’s huge archive of images, extra{ordinary} offers an insight into the reality and surreality of everyday life in 21st century Britain.

In an alternative to the picturesque and often clichéd images found in tourist information brochures, the artists, Jan Williams and Chris Teasdale, seek out the curious, unusual and absurd in the places they visit. The artists say, ‘The Caravan Gallery doesn’t airbrush out Portaloos, and we’re as likely to photograph tanning salons as thatched cottages’.

The Caravan Gallery itself is an innovative photography gallery-on-wheels. Since 2000, Williams and Teasdale have travelled thousands of miles, taking their iconic 1969 mustard-coloured caravan to locations across Britain, from London’s Tate Britain to the small fishing port of Peterhead in the North East of Scotland, in a quest to share their photographs and inspire others.

Contributions from local people are vital to the project. The artists delight in talking to the many visitors drawn to the caravan, and seek out their recommendations of people and places worthy of investigation. Williams and Teasdale have photographed everything from distressed shoppers in Liverpool to a one-penny wedding dress; from a box of mystery vegetables, to an elderly couple enjoying the papers whilst wedged in between two cars in a lay by, oblivious to the scenery. The artists say, ‘Unexpected delights are to be found in the most unpromising situations, and vice versa. Many of our images tell stories and raise questions. They might be tawdry, topographic, touching, tragicomic, typical and sometimes irreverent but are always real’.

The exhibition, extra{ordinary} Photographs of Britain by The Caravan Gallery, is one of three components in a major citywide project. Over the course of the exhibition visitors will also be able to experience The Caravan Gallery on location during the Bradford Caravan Gallery Tour, and contribute their own photographs to the Bradford Pride of Place Project displays in pop-up hubs in the city centre.

The Pride of Place Project Tour is a project by The Caravan Gallery funded by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

The Caravan Gallery is a collaboration between artists and photographers Jan Williams and Chris Teasdale, who use photography to document what they call the ‘reality and surreality’ of everyday life. Founded in the year 2000, The Caravan Gallery is a mobile exhibition space and itinerant social club on wheels housed in a 1969 mustard coloured caravan. The venue has travelled thousands of miles taking contemporary art to unexpected locations and tens of thousands of people in Britain and abroad.
www.thecaravangallery.photography

Image: No Idea, Liverpool 2013 © The Caravan Gallery

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