Towner is delighted to present a major exhibition by English photographer and artist Richard Billingham, showing together for the first time his panoramic photographs and video work from 2002 to 2014.
Capturing the British countryside, from the South Downs to the Norfolk Fen and Constable Country of East of England, these immersive works explore the rich textures of these landscapes. His panoramic views unearth the particular geology, vegetation, the changing weather and light of these places, some of which he visited over a period of years.
The collected works in Panoramic have a visceral aesthetic, revealing Billingham’s emotional and creative relationship to nature and landscape, drawing on his background and sensibilities as a painter. The works reference the pictorial rhetoric of British landscape painters, from the 19th century John Constable to present David Hockney. They explore rhythm, pattern, repetition, dynamic composition as well as the tableaux in nature and often record a transformative moment in the landscape.
Richard Billingham is best known for his 1996 photobook Ray's A Laugh, which documents the life of his alcoholic father Ray and heavily tattooed mother, Liz. In 2001, he was shortlisted for the Turner Prize for his solo show at the Ikon Gallery in Birmingham.
He is now a lecturer in Fine Art Photography at the University of Gloucestershire and Professor at Middlesex University (2012).
Since Ray's A Laugh, Billingham has turned his camera away from people, focusing instead on urban and natural landscapes. He has made landscape photographs at places of personal significance around the Black Country and has also worked in video and film.
Towner will also be showing Billingham’s 2012 film work Sweep, which portrays trees moving in wind, commissioned by ArtSway.
The exhibition has been supported by Middlesex University and University of Gloucestershire.