Love photography? Adore nature? If so, you’re in for a treat as this month Glossop becomes home to a brand new, grassroots photography festival Dark Peak Photo. The four-day festival encompasses exhibitions, talks and workshops from leading local artists. Dark Peak Photo’s first ever theme is ‘now and then’ – an idea that’s open enough to include a broad range of responses yet still reflecting on the ideas of change, memory and history.
Hosted across Glossop’s venues, spaces and streets, there will be evidence of festival activity in every corner, including the shop windows of participating businesses. You can find many of the exhibitions at Victoria Hall, including work from Melanie King, Ciara Leeming, Adrian Lambert and others.
The artist’s styles, conceptual interests and approach to the medium of photography vary greatly, making for a very satisfying viewing experience for audiences.
Melanie King’s practice explores the relationship between the environment, photography and materiality. Her project Acquaintance on display at the festival utilises botanical cyanotype toning and sustainable photographic processes. The project focuses on sustainable photographic processes as well as how the resulting works can be materially connected to the landscape with which the artist grew up.
Fans of vintage photography will enjoy A WALK DOWN GLOSSOP HIGH STREET – CIRCA 1900, a mixed media exhibit drawn from the Glossop Heritage Trust Archive and the MACE archive. Ciara Leeming’s Levy Lockdown Portraits document her neighbourhood residents’ experiences of the pandemic. She initially photographed over 250 households and later asked them to reflect on their experiences with notes in a book of the published photographs. The project beautifully captures the best parts of the community at an incredibly difficult time.
Other event highlights include Paul Hill MBE’s talk, Landscape Photography is Not About the Land – Photographing the Peak where the artist explores why we’re often tempted to recreate the nature photographs we’ve already seen before and what the alternative could be.
For a more hands-on experience, you can join a photo walk at dusk with artist Not Quite Light, for whom half light and darkness are photographic areas of expertise which he uses to create images as well as films and audio recordings.