GOING BACK IN TIME WITH THE COASTLINES EXHIBITION THIS AUTUMN.
Internationally renowned photographer Joni Sternbach will be exhibiting her striking portraits of surfers at Circle Gallery’s ‘Coastlines’ show this autumn. A fine art photography show, Coastlines profiles the work of two distinctive artists – Joni Sternbach from the US and Caroline Marrack from Cornwall - both inspired by the north Cornish coast, concentrating on contemporary analogue photography.
Celebrated for her unique portraits of surfers using traditional wet plate photography. Working with a large format camera and using hand-poured plates with a portable dark room, Sternbach has profiled a fascinating range of people, both known and unknown on prized surfing beaches around the world.
Award-winning US photographer Joni Sternbach spent the summer of 2014 documenting the surfers and the surf communities of North Cornwall. “Wendy MCG and her boyfriend Lee Bartlett are the real reason I came to Newquay and they introduced me to the surf scene around Newquay and put me in touch with Louise Searle, the editor of Surfgirl Magazine who helped spread the word and that is how I got so many people involved – through the scene and word of mouth.”
Turning to historic photographic techniques Joni captures the essence and even something primordial within her portraits and landscapes.
“I learned the wet-plate collodion process in 1999, however, I had done many other historic printing process long before that. I am interested in the conversation between techniques of the past and current ideas,” explains Joni. “I think photography is the most exciting when it combines techniques and processes for a subject matter that you might not expect would work well together. However, finding that synchronistic match between process and project is not as simple as one might think!”
The images taken in Cornwall were a great success and some of these will be at the Coastlines exhibition. “My favourite image? I have a bunch. I photographed Corinne Evans, Izzy Keane, Lucy Kirkland and Lucy Thorman … it’s these women who are caught in time; I don’t know how to describe it. Sometimes there are expressions – if you look at Izzy’s eyes, she has super light blue eyes and they went white, so it’s freaky the way that she looks and yet there’s a softness and it looks like if Woodstock were on a beach in 2014 this would be it. They look like free spirits”, says Joni.
Cornish based photographer and writer Caroline Marrack’s work focuses on images captured on vintage film cameras during coastal walks in her Cornish homeland. In a world of digital media, taking photographs with older, slower tools enables both artists to work within the limitations of the camera, making a space for poetry.
Coastlines - Fine Art Photography Show featuring Joni Sternbach and Caroline Marrack is showing at Circle Contemporary Gallery, Hawksfield, Wadebridge in Cornwall from the end of September. www.circlecontemporary.co.uk