(Photo credit: Central Park, University City, Chongqing, China, 2011. From Forest, Yan Wang Preston)

It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years, but it has! For our anniversary we will be marking this landmark year by inviting three photographers who spoke at Redeye’s first public lectures to return. It’s a chance to reflect on their photographic careers in parallel to Redeye’s lifespan.

Each in turn invites another photographer to speak – someone they admire, have worked with in the past, or are mentoring. Both photographers will have a chance to speak individually and together, to paint a picture of their inspirations, career and work.

The first session in the series sees Simon Norfolk invite Yan Wang Preston. This event is for anyone who is interested in their work, or in photography generally. Early booking recommended.


Simon Norfolk is a landscape photographer whose work over twenty years has been themed around a probing and stretching of the meaning of the word 'battlefield' in all its forms. As such, he has photographed in some of the world's worst war-zones and refugee crises, but has also photographed supercomputers used to design military systems or the test-launching of nuclear missiles. Time’s layeredness in the landscape is an ongoing fascination of his.

His work has been widely recognised: he has won The Discovery Prize at Les Rencontres d'Arles in 2005; The Infinity Prize from The International Center of Photography in 2004; and he was winner of the European Publishing Award, 2002. In 2003 he was shortlisted for the Citibank Prize now known as the Deutsche Börse Prize and in 2013 he won the Prix Pictet Commission. He has won multiple World Press Photo and Sony World Photography awards.

He has produced four monographs of his work including 'Afghanistan: Chronotopia' (2002) which was published in five languages; 'For Most Of It I Have No Words' (1998) about the landscapes of genocide; and 'Bleed' (2005) about the war in Bosnia. His most recent is 'Burke + Norfolk; Photographs from the War in Afghanistan.' (2011).

He has work held in major collections such as The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, The Getty in Los Angeles as well as San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Wilson Centre for Photography and the Sir Elton John Collection. His work has been shown widely and internationally from Brighton to Ulaanbaatar and in 2011 his 'Burke + Norfolk' work was one of the first ever photography solo shows at Tate Modern in London.


Yan Wang Preston is a British-Chinese artist interested in the contested definition of nature in contemporary societies, and how landscape photography can reveal the hidden complexities behind the surface of physical landscapes. Her major projects include: ‘Mother River’ (2010-2014), for which she photographed the entire 6,211km Yangtze River in China at precise 100km intervals on a large-format film camera; ‘Forest' (2010-2017), for which she investigated the politics of reforestation by photographing transplanted old trees in new Chinese cities; and ‘Yuan’ (2011), for which she carried out a series of intimate performances at iconic locations on the Yangtze River, including the river source at 5,400 meters above the sea level.

Preston’s work has won major international awards such as the Hundred Heroines, the Royal Photographic Society (2018), the 1st Prize, Syngenta Photography Award (2017), the Shiseido Photographer Prize at the Three Shadows Photography Annual Award in Beijing, China (2016) and the Reviewers Choice Award at FORMAT, Derby (2014).

Solo exhibitions of Preston’s work has been presented at venues such as the 56th Venice Biennale, Chongqing China Three Gorges Museum, Wuhan Art Museum, Gallery of Photography Ireland, Impressions Gallery in Bradford, UK, GEXTO Photography Festival in Spain and Xposure International Photography Festival, in Sharjah, UAE. Important group shows include Dubai Photo (2016), Syngenta Photography Award exhibition at the Somerset House, London (2017) and 209 Women at the Westminster Palace, London (2018).

Preston’s monographs ‘Forest’ and ‘Mother River’ are both published by Hatje Cantz in 2018. Among them, ‘Mother River’ has been selected as one of Lensculture’s Favourite Photobooks of 2018. Her work has also been featured in numerous journals, newspapers and online platforms, such as The Guardian, BJP, Irish Times and CCTV. Her work has been collected by institutions such as Wuhan Art Museum in China, Syngenta, Swatch, as well as private collectors worldwide.

Preston was originally trained in Clinical Medicine in Fudan University, Shanghai, China and worked as an anaesthetist before moving to England in 2005.  Since then she has devoted herself into a career in photography. She received a PhD in Photography from the University of Plymouth in 2018. Aside of her artist career, she is also a lecturer in photography at the University of Huddersfield.

Monday 28 October, please note that doors open at 7pm and the talk will start at 7:30pm.

Waterside Arts Centre, Sale 


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