Leon Foggitt’s portraits of self-taught artists who survived brain injury

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“For individuals who have had their lives changed beyond recognition, the studio acts as an integral part of their new identity,” says Foggitt

Photographer Leon Foggitt first encountered Submit To Love Studios in 2016. Based in Hackney, London, the collective is composed of self-taught artists — all of whom have survived brain injuries.  “I was intrigued by the combination of circumstances, and how having had a brain injury would affect the type of art being produced as well as how people would experience having their portrait made,” says Foggitt, who approached the studio about making a body of personal work.

Foggitt started making portraits of the artists, presenting them as diptychs alongside images of their artwork. “It was inspiring and touching to be working with people whose lives had been changed forever, and were living with such positivity,” he reflects. This month, an exhibition of work made by the artists at Submit To Love Studios was due to be displayed at Autograph gallery, London, alongside Foggitt’s portraits. Titled Common Threads, the exhibition has been postponed due to Covid-19, but, in the meantime, a selection of Foggitt’s images are available to view online.

“For people who have had their lives changed beyond recognition, in many cases, the studio acts as an integral part of their new identity,” says Foggitt. “I hope that viewers continue to appreciate seeing a group of people being represented in photographs that they may not normally come into contact with in day to day life.”

Marigold Warner

Marigold Warner joined the British Journal Photography in April 2018, and currently holds the position of Online Editor. She studied English Literature and History of Art at the University of Leeds, followed by an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London. Her work has been published by titles including the Telegraph Magazine, Huck, Gal-dem, Disegno, and the Architects Journal.