Robert Richardson Looks At The Bright Side Up

An exhibition of photographs from fairs, markets and show grounds

Taken on days when the light was vibrant and sparkling, most of these photographs are genuinely optimistic. It is, on the whole, a very entertaining and life-affirming series. However, a number of the images seem to hold a poignancy and sadness, and the title Bright Side Up becomes ironic. Public space is, in these moments, transformed by private space: individual identity and loneliness set in relief against the holiday crowds. There is, perhaps, a sense of transience, with these constructed wonderlands available for just one day. The work can also be seen as a variant of Pop Art, since it presents items of popular culture and revels in their quirkiness and sheer bravado.
Most of the photographs were taken in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire: at Melton Days, which change two of the town’s parks into show grounds and fairs, and at the Bank Holiday markets which take place at a nearby abandoned airfield.

Through a programme of conferences, colloquia, public conversations and gala dinners, as well as reports, podcasts and blogs, Cumberland Lodge initiates fresh debate on social and ethical issues of national and international significance. We are an independent foundation and so able to promote frank exchanges of views and cross-sector co-operation on matters affecting the development of society.
We initiate about ten conferences a year at the Lodge, often working in tandem with another organisation such as the British Academy, the Health Protection Agency, or the Workers’ Educational Association. In addition we run at least four “Cumberland Conversations” a year in which we invite public figures to talk about their lives and their achievements. By reflecting on particular issues in terms of their wider ramifications, our conferences are informative and inspiring, giving participants the opportunity to gain fresh insights and to make new contacts. At least one conference a year is dedicated to postgraduate students, bringing them together from many institutions and disciplines. Other conferences are for people in any walk of life with a commitment to the topic.

Robert Richardson was, for many years, Principal Lecturer in Communication at De Montfort University, Leicester, He has exhibited widely in the UK.
The exhibition runs from 14th January to 30th March with free public viewing on the following Saturday afternoons from 3pm – 5pm.
4th February, 18th February, and 3rd March, 2012  See Website

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