Y2 100km from the river source ©  Yan Preston 


‘The Journey not the Arrival Matters’ T.S Elliott

Many photographers find that an epic journey unlocks new possibilities for their work.

Epic Journeys will bring together the work of three photographers and artists who have recently embarked on planned expeditions of heroic proportions, each making images in remote locations to capture the beauty of grand and often hostile environments.

Speaking at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation on Thursday 3rd March, Annie Carpenter, Michal Iwanowksi and Yan Wang Preston will deliver short talks on the motivations behind their journeys, problems they faced along the way and the logistics and techniques needed for shooting in extreme landscapes. 

In October 2015, Annie Carpenter set sail to the Arctic with the Arctic Circle, an art and science expedition residency around the international territory of Svalbard in the Arctic. Her resulting images will be the focus of her short presentation. Michal Iwanowski will then present his project Clear Of People, retracing the steps of his grandfather and great Uncle who escaped from a gulag in Russia in 1945, and crossed over 2200km on a quest to return home. Yan Preston will talk about Mother River, her project in which she followed a strict ‘Y Points System’ to photograph one of China’s Mother Rivers, the Yangtze, with a precise interval of every 100 kilometres. Measured at 6,211* kilometres long, the river provides 63 photographic locations for the single-minded artist-explorer. 

This event is designed to provoke and challenge the way you approach your own photographic or artistic projects. It might even inspire you to embark on your own epic journey into the wilderness. 

About the Speakers

Yan Wang Preston is a British-Chinese artist based in West Yorkshire, UK. Previously working as an anaesthetist in China, she moved to England in 2005 and has since completed a MA in Visual Arts at Leeds Metropolitan University. She is now completing a PhD in Photography at Plymouth University. Mother River has been shown internationally and has won numerous awards. In 2015, it was nominated for the prestigious Prix Pictet competition. In 2014, Mother River won three awards the FORMAT International Portfolio Reviews. A Mother River touring show is currently being planned for the UK. Meanwhile, the Mother River photobook is anticipated to be published by Hatje Cantz in 2016.

Michal Iwanowski is a Polish-born, Wales-based artist and a current Ffotogallery tutor. Iwanowski studied documentary photography at the University of Wales, Newport, graduating in 2008. His work explores the relationship between landscape and memory; marking the silent passing of otherwise insignificant individuals and histories. In 2009, he won the Emerging Photographers award by Magenta Foundation, as well as being given a Honourable Mention at Px3 Prix De Photographie, Paris. Iwanowski received Arts Council of Wales and Wales Arts International grants for his projects Clear of People and Fairy Fort Project and in 2012 had a residency in Kaunas, supported by the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture. His work has been exhibited in group and solo shows worldwide (including solo shows in the UK, Belarus, and Poland), and published internationally in magazines (BJP, Source, CCQ) and numerous books (European Prospects by Ffotogallery, Postwar Stories by Kaunas Photographers' Gallery, Perspectives on Place by Bloomsbury, to name a few.) Iwanowski's first photo book - Clear of People - is due to be published in April 2016.

Annie Carpenter is an artist based at Rogue Studios in Manchester. Her work revolves around the links between science and the labour of artists, through the exposure of the process of ‘working’. Since graduating with a BA in fine art from Leeds University in 2009, Annie has since gone on to exhibit in the UK and internationally. In 2013 she received an MA in fine art from Manchester School of Art, and was selected for the Axisweb MAstars feature by Paulette Terry Brien. Throughout 2012/13 she curated the Rogue Project Space alongside Taneesha Ahmed, with the exhibition programme Free Failing. In 2013 she was awarded a residency at I-Park Foundation, Connecticut, USA and in October 2015 she set sail to the Arctic with the Arctic Circle, an art and science expedition residency around the international territory of Svalbard in the Arctic.


Tickets and timings:
Doors open at 17.30 and the talks will begin at 18:00. Tickets guarantee seats, but please arrive in plenty of time for the first talk. Standard tickets are £10. Redeye member tickets are £7. The venue is fully accessible. There is a bar at the venue where refreshments can be purchased. 

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