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Engaging with ordinary people #art #photography

It’s Sunday morning and as usual, I’ll share my thoughts with you. I tend to ask a lot of questions in my blog posts. I don’t easily accept things. I’ve had a problem with my leg. I thought it was the blood flow to the muscles but my doctor disagreed. One year later, I’ve seen the hospital doctor and the surgeon and this week I’ll have a test to see if it’s the blood flow to my muscles! Last week was interesting, I went to the Pride of Place exhibition in West Bromwich and an artists talk. In my mind, I asked a lot of questions about art. It is an art festival but is it engaging with ordinary people in a conversation about art?

engaging with ordinary people

Engaging with ordinary people

I photographed Noddy Holder on Friday when he opened the Rewind shop in Darlaston. He’s still down to earth and is still engaging with ordinary people in his own inimitable way. My photos on Facebook were received well. The link on the History of Wednesbury got 232 likes. Anything over 100 likes is good. That is engagement on Facebook. My links to the art festival aren’t engaging with ordinary people so much. Do they see it as elitist?


I’ve been finding the very word Sandwell irritating. In some social media posts, I’ve dropped it from the Sandwell Pride of place title and just referred to the exhibition as the Pride of Place exhibition. Driving down West Bromwich High Street in a convoy at 5 miles per hour on Wednesday made a few critical thoughts go through my mind. My leg ached from the constant clutch control. Then through another succession of traffic lights, none in a sequence of course.

The exhibition

I had mixed feelings about the exhibition. The way the images were displayed was good and the photographs were good. Is it engaging ordinary people? I think it is but only partially. The venue wasn’t ideal. Art galleries are the ideal venue but Wednesbury art gallery needs the shades from the skylights removing and some natural light let into the Richards gallery. I think I would have looked for space in the foyers of buildings for exhibition space. Just sticking the prints to the walls without frames is a nice idea, though. I think I would have preferred the exhibition divided into six sections, one for each town, too. Out of all the events and exhibitions, the Pride of Place exhibition does stand out as the one that is engaging with ordinary people. That was partly achieved by the photography competition.


We will soon have a new Prime Minister, the favourite being Boris Johnson who gets paid a small fortune to write for the Telegraph. He epitomising elitism with his Bullingdon Club background. He has no idea of how to engage with ordinary people and is about as pompous as they come. Elitism is alive and well in Britain and especially in art. Do a Google search of fine art photography and all the pictures that come up are in the same style and mostly monochrome. They are photographers copying each other and producing boring elitist art.

Caravan Gallery

Chris and Jan of the Caravan Gallery do at least produce photographs with some merit and some are photographs we can really relate to. I get some engagement because I add words to my images and the engagement is mainly on social media. At the artist talk, Niall McDiarmid added some dialogue to his images and that made all the difference. He likes talking to people and that seemed to be driving his photography. I’m not so articulate so I prefer the written word. I did learn a few things listening to that talk and it was interesting.

That’s all for today. I hope my new readers have found my blog interesting. If you would like to subscribe just enter your email address at the top of the sidebar (desktop site) or follow me on Twitter for links to the latest posts. Those links are also posted on my Facebook page.

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