The photography of tragedy, from across the generations

Despite detailing three very different tragedies, the varied work in the show, which will exhibit at new multi-disciplinery arts space Platform gallery in Southwark, London, shares “an interest in examining how people live in the wake of catastrophe.”
Karen Block specialises in fine art and social documentary. In Yesterday’s News, she presents thirty photographs from her visits to Belarus, marking each year since the disaster.

Toxic Cloud © Karen Block
Documenting the lives and landscapes associated with the fall out of Chernobyl, Karen Block sought to find a way of visualising the long term unseen effects of the region, from a humanitarian and ecosystem perspective, that can be related directly to the catastrophe.
Her work, the gallery says “is a poignant statement upon the unlimited scope of nuclear contamination.”
Toxic Cloud © Karen Block
Sophie Fauchier is a fine art photographer whom specialises in “photographic narratives”.
In Yesterday’s News, she documents her journey through the devastation of the Bosnian war.
Bosnia © Sophie Fauchier
Her work captures the scars left on the landscape a place that was once headline news.
Through a long dialogue with survivors, she creates images that serve “as artefacts of human suffering,” the gallery says.
Bosnia © Sophie Fauchier
In Yesterday’s News, social documentary photographer Chris Gravett exhibits pieces from his Aftershock series, revealing the resilience of a society riven by economic and agricultural depression, underlying child labour issues, human trafficking, exploitation and chronic poverty.
The photographers present their work in collaboration with set designers Jojo Fauchier and Darcy Davies, and sound artist Evan Lopez de Bergara.
Aftershock © Chris Gravett
Together they have devised a reconstruction of the exhibition space that creates “an immersive journey for the viewer.”
On Wednesday 8th June, a panel of experts, including Tony Barber, Europe Editor of the Financial Times, Moscow correspondent for Reuters news agency at the time of the Chernobyl disaster and war reporter for the Independent during the Bosnian war, will join the photographers for a discussion of the exhibition’s themes.
Yesterday’s News will be exhibited at Platform Southwark, 1 Joan Street, London SE1, from 8th –11th June 2016. For more information, see here.

Tom Seymour

Tom Seymour is an Associate Editor at The Art Newspaper and an Associate Lecturer at London College of Communication. His words have been published in The Guardian, The Observer, The New York Times, Financial Times, Wallpaper* and The Telegraph. He has won Writer of the Year and Specialist Writer of the year on three separate occassions at the PPA Awards for his work with The Royal Photographic Society.