Mar 23 2012: Aerial View Of A Crowd In An Unknown City Centre (Possibly Nottingham, c.1920s)

There’s something intriguingly elusive about this image, which both looks like the Market Square in Nottingham, viewed from somewhere near the dome on the roof of the present Council House while it was still under construction (if so, this would place the image at some point between 1927 and 1929), and, well, doesn’t look like … Continue reading

Mar 5 2012: The Furthest Possible Separation Between Photographer And Subject (Date and Location Unknown)

Photographers are invariably fascinated by images of photography itself, with the likes of Martin Parr and Anne Collier building large sections of their work on explorations that reflect the process of documenting and looking as much as the things they’re actually documenting and looking at through their viewfinders. In this image, a beautifully balanced image … Continue reading

An Interview With Yelena Popova (Primary, 2013)

Yelena Popova is a Russian-born painter based in Nottingham, and the following interview took place at her studio at Primary in the winter of 2013. An abridged version appeared in LeftLion magazine in November 2013. This full transcript of the conversation is published here in advance of the opening of her exhibition After Image at … Continue reading

Feb 2 2012: From Anthony Symondson to Mr Bulmer-Thomas on the Subject of Stained Glass (St Andrew’s, 16 March 1966)

Early last year, as part of the Bookmark Project at Nottingham Contemporary, I manufactured a fake letter from a fictional artist, Robert Holcombe, to a very real artist, Eduardo Paolozzi, and hoped that inserting this fabrication into a book in the study’s library would grant the object a certain authenticity, as though the correspondence had been used … Continue reading

Dec 12 2011: Male and Female Paper Anatomical Models (Home Medical Companion, 1930s)

A general anatomical figure was featured here a while ago, in that instance taken from Virtue’s Household Physician (1924), and other entries have included a series of animal anatomies and a rather marvellous fold-out anatomy of the human head. I’m not sure where this obsession with anatomy came from (perhaps the presence of books like … Continue reading

Nov 15 2011: Lost City Supplement: Advertising Images from Frank Wedekind’s ‘Lulu’ Theatre Programme (Nottingham Playhouse, 1970)

As a kind of supplement to Lost City, compiled as a sideline to a residency at Nottingham Contemporary earlier this year during the Anne Collier and Jack Goldstein exhibitions, here’s a further gathering of adverts placed by mostly vanished Nottingham businesses, this time all sourced from a 1970 Nottingham Playhouse theatre programme connected to a … Continue reading

Nov 13 2011: Eight Images In Anticipation Of Klaus Weber From The Wonder Book Of Wonders (1930s)

Sorting through some papers in the Robert Holcombe archive revealed an odd correspondence between the random colour plates in a 1930s pictorial encyclopaedia called The Wonder Book Of Wonders and certain themes in Klaus Weber’s equally Cabinet of Curiosities-like exhibition at Nottingham Contemporary, which features paintings made by bees, numerous versions of an iconic image … Continue reading

Nov 2 2011: A Considered and Not at All Unreasonable Musing on the Nature of Present Austerity Measures (November 2011)

I figured I might as well post this up here. It’s not the most highbrow thing I’ve ever written, but when the first (and, as things turned out, also last) stanzas popped into my head the other night, complete and from nowhere, exactly as they appear here, I think I got a bit carried away with … Continue reading

An Interview with The Soundcarriers (Full Transcript, 2010)

I spoke to Paul Isherwood and Adam Cann outside the Cafe Bar at Nottingham Contemporary in September 2010, just after the second Soundcarriers LP, Celeste, had been released. An edited version of the conversation appeared in LeftLion in December that year. Since then, they’ve released two further full-length albums – The Other World Of The … Continue reading

Sep 27 2011: Twelve BBC Sound Effect Library Archive Discs (BBC Aberdeen, 1940s/50s)

Earlier this year, in the Jack Goldstein exhibition at Nottingham Contemporary, a series of coloured vinyl records containing the sounds of forest fires, barking dogs and ships lost in fog were featured, and in some ways these BBC archive 78s are the source material – indirectly – for those works. Made in the 1940s or … Continue reading