Mark Power 26 different endings (and a photobooth)

Exhibition – Mark Power 26 Different Endings,  at the Hoxton Hotel Shoreditch.

This exhibition was a fortuitous coincidence. I had been researching the locations of analogue photo booths in central London as I wanted to make some strips of photos to try out an idea born from A2 and A5. This location came up, and when I emailed them to ask if they still had the booth (they did) it transpired they also had an exhibition of work by Magnum Photographer Mark Power that was opening the day before I was due to visit.

I first came across Mark’s work in my first ever visit as an OCA student. The scheduled visit that I was booked onto was cancelled, so I took a train to Bristol to see the Magnum exhibition Open for Business about workplaces and workers in Britain. Mark Power made work in the Bombardier train factory, at Nissan and at Camira Fabrics. I like the work for its intimacy and especially its portrayal of workers’ feet. The work must have made a big impression as he was one of two photographers (out of nine) whose work I wrote about. Blog post here.

This work is a series of landscapes, taken in the places that are just off the edges of the A-Z. They are colourful, empty places, full of evidence of people but no actual people. Some of the compositions even reminded me of A-Z pages, with clear colours and lines. Presented as large framed prints, on both sides of a narrow corridor. I liked the concept of this very much, not least as I live in a small town that’s in the bottom right hand corner of an OS map so I ended up with the 3 adjoining maps in order to plan cycle routes in each direction. I always wondered about the edges of maps – who decides where the edges are? Did there used to be nothing at the edges and the towns have expanded beyond the edges? Is there a parallel between the edge of the map and the edge of the frame? You can see more details on this work, including the images, on Mark’s site here.

I would have loved to have had more time to devote to this exhibition, as it was I had to make my photobooth images and squeeze in a coffee before heading to the Tate Modern for 10:45. For anyone in the area I can recommend this exhibition and the coffee. The photobooth is interesting too, 4 poses for £3 albeit overexposed and a bit contrasty.



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