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Arles 2017: Fiona Rogers’ top five

Iran, Year 38, various Pulling together nearly 40 years of visual and political history is by no means an easy task, but in Iran, Year 38, curators Newsha Tavakolian and Anahita Ghabaian Etehadieh manage to elegantly weave together past and present in an exhibition that is both authoritative and authentic. Displaying work by over 60 Iranian photographers, the show takes the troubles and dissidence of revolution in 1979 as ‘year x’, the exhibition title referencing the time that has since passed. The show is broken into chapters covering the revolution, the Iran-Iraq war and – arguably the show’s crowning glory – how Iran’s contemporary photographers, the children of the revolution, are using a visual language to depict themes such as identity. Particularly of note is a large and striking rendition of a women brandishing a G-3 machine gun by Kaveh Kazemi, providing a necessary regional voice to a revolution often viewed in the West through a Western lens. A beautiful section celebrates Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, and particularly captivating is Gelerah Kia Zand and her …

Alexander Mourant’s Aurelian study of time and memory via classic butterfly houses

The classic British butterfly house acts as the backdrop to Alexander Mourant’s Aurelian, an evocative study of the passing of time and the slippery nature of memory. “These hot, artificial environments are used through the work to probe the nature of experience, such as an assembly point, or an artist’s studio, as an envisioned idea where time is not absolute but continuously contained and all-encompassing,” says the 23-year-old, who recently graduated from Falmouth University.

Arles 2017: Vivienne Gamble’s top five

The director of Seen Fifteen Gallery on her five favourite at Arles this year - from the official programme, the Luma Rencontres Dummy Book Award, and the LUMA Foundation Parc des Ateliers

Book: Pathos as Distance by Andreas Mühe

For his latest project, Andreas Mühe has opened a dialogue between the centuries. For alongside the photographs of austere politicians and dramatic cliffs in Pathos as Distance, he has interwoven excerpts from a novel, 1913 – The Year before the Storm by Florian Illies. In doing so, he hopes to give readers a sense of perspective about our own, increasingly fractious era. “1913 reminded me a little bit of our here and now,” says Mühe. “This unburdened and rather easy-going lifestyle right before World War One breaks out - [the start of the war] completely surprising, but very predictable at the same time.

Arles 2017: Hannah Watson’s top five

No matter how hard you try, sometimes Arles can be just like Glastonbury (sans mud) – lots of things going on and you get sidetracked, and don’t get to see the one thing you wanted to. However I did manage to get round a diverse group of exhibits this year, one of my favourites actually being the Alice Neel painting show at the Fondation Van Gogh. Here is my round-up of what I saw of note this edition. The House of the Ballenesque, Roger Ballen This was very talked about in Arles – an old ramshackle house that Ballen has taken over, to express somewhat of what goes on in his mind and informs his photography. Like a giant walk-in sketchbook, it’s part fun-house and part mental asylum, with lots of creepy figures and dolls heads stuck on mismatching bodies. It’s worth seeing because it’s a bit different, though it doesn’t quite feel like the main event – it’s more of a fun sideshow to his practice, but interesting nonetheless. Try to go on a …