Arch Collective: Jimmy Cornaro 'Adi' (until 5th September 2013)

I had something very different on my art agenda today. I visited the Arch Collective, SE16, where Jimmy Cornaro is currently holding his first solo exhibition. What particularly interested me about this exhibition is how Cornaro clearly has acknowledged the presence of vast numbers of travel photography exhibits. With this, he knew that he must add a new dimension to his collection.

The artist ensures that his photographs are cited with anecdotes from his travels, giving a personal feel that sets his photographs apart from countless tourist shots. It is necessary to do this, as social media such as Flickr and Facebook now provides an instant platform for wannabe-photographers.

It should be a priority of any exhibitor to educate their visitors on their subject matter, and Cornaro provides a touching historical backdrop to his trip, as the viewer charts his trip through India to Israel. With the controversial yet eternally relevant topics of religion and politics, we are in no way being lectured or influenced to think a certain way; any details given merely support the photographs' natural beauty.

One of the most pleasing aspects of the exhibit are the citations. As some of the photographs are self-explanatory, there is little to no need for any information other than location of the shot. My personal favourite is the decision of the photographer/curator to use the citation 'You're never too big to be cute', pictured below, alongside two elephants. Such captions make the photographs hugely accessible. 

Despite the bizarre industrial setting of Surrey Quays, the Arch Collective is certainly a venue to look out for, as they pride themselves on supporting emerging talent. 


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