With new commissions and new urgencies, Belfast Photo Festival is back with a bang for its latest edition, themed ‘The Verge’
Belfast Photo Festival has commissioned Alexandra Lethbridge, the winner of last year’s Spotlight Award, to create a new body of work for this year’s event. The immersive exhibition, on view at the Golden Thread Gallery, is titled An Object of Vision and draws the viewer into a conversation around the absence and presence of women within historical narratives, particularly within art history and material culture.
Lethbridge’s distinctive and intuitive style of collage, which incorporates found archival material, is presented as a combination of large fabric hangings and dense wall-based work. Removing sections of photographs of classical busts, antique sculptures and idealised female forms, the artist fills the negative space with excerpts of texts, detailing accounts of discrimination against women and studies on trans experience and the menopause.
The work deals with the specific issue of gender, honing in on the unjust exclusion of women and the objectification of the female form in the art history canon. In her expertly crafted collages, and sourcing of archival material, she reasserts power structures and challenges our reading of imagery, inviting the viewer to re-imagine an alternative narrative, tapping into a much more psychological realm.