Hello, my name is Sebastian Edge. I built and founded the North London Darkroom and with your help I hope to take the development of my project to its next stage.
Together with your support, I want to launch the beginning of our annual programme of exhibitions as well as print and publish the very first issue of our photo-zine 'GRAIN'.
Here is the plan: from the 5th to the 13th of December the NLD will hire part of the Rag Factory in London and finally reach out to the public, showcasing the work of the 8 photographers that use the facilities here in Tottenham Hale. Over the 7 days of the exhibition, we will celebrate the beauty of the wet printing processes along with running a series of talks and events that will look at the role of analog photography and the craft of hand printing in the digital age.
There are many photographers out there choosing to work with film photography. We want to call out to them and invite 8 other photographers to exhibit their work alongside ours, so that we can show the diversity in approaches and methods of the fine art darkroom printing.
WHY AN EXHIBITION AND WHY A PHOTO ZINE?
The NLD has been opened for more than a year now and we think is time for us to take the work produced here out of the darkroom and into the light collectively!
Many of the members that use our facilities have been extensively, but always individually, showing their work both in the UK and abroad. This project would be the first collective effort coming out of the NLD and will represent for all of us, intended as a group of like-minded photographers, a great achievement.
We want this exhibition to advance North London Darkrooms vision for the future and enable us to join the current reflections on the growing contemporary understanding of film photography intended as a fine art medium and practice in itself. We are committed in becoming a point of reference for everyone finding the significance of his or her practice in this medium and further nurture and support the work of these photographers.
Starting from the very first day of the show, we will also be distributing our photo-zine 'GRAIN' that will act both as a catalogue and as an artefact. We wanted to create our very own channel for projects and ideas while delivering a tangible visual experience of the NLD production.
The one we want to publish is the first issue, and so an important one. Without wanting to give too much away, it will include articles, artist profiles and even photographers’ work made especially for the magazine and for you as a reader.
WHEN AND WHERE WILL THE EXHIBITION BE TAKING PLACE?
The exhibition will take place at the Rag Factory, just off Brick Lane in London.
The Rag Factory is located in 16-18 Heneage St, London, E1 5LJ easily accessible from Aldgate East, Shoreditch High Street and Liverpool Street train stations.
The opening reception will be on the evening of the 5th and the show will run for a further 6 days. During this time, we will run a series of events and talks that will discuss the role of analog photography in the digital age.
WHAT IS THE NORTH LONDON DARKROOM?
The North London Darkroom was launched in May 2012 intended to be an affordable space for photographers to produce their large or small, carefully managed, wet process prints. I wanted to establish a collective of like-minded photographers who could develop both prints and ideas alongside each other.
The North London Darkroom supports its members with specialist and high standard equipment and facilities -many of which have been donated by the London National Gallery and Kings College University.
The space is used amongst only a few photographers, so that they can all benefit from a professional working environment as well as be supported in their commercial work and printmaking. This gives them the chance of producing magnificent prints and really experimenting with the medium, pushing their skills and creativity forward.
HOW DOES THE NORTH LONDON DARKROOM WORK?
There are more darkrooms appearing all the time, delivering workshops or services as this revival in the medium is gaining strength. The North London Darkroom however follows a more traditional shared darkroom environment and model.
The North London Darkroom works on a membership basis. Each member pays an affordable fixed monthly fee that contributes towards the maintenance and running costs of the space. They all have a key and 24h access, so that they can print around their busy schedules and their own exploits and adventures as photographers.
Everyone is introduced to the other members, it’s important that people understand and respect each other’s prints, habits and methods. This has often led photographers to expand their crafts, picking up additional skills.
WHERE IS THE NORTH LONDON DARKROOM?
The Darkroom is located in an industrial estate 5 minutes walk from Tottenham Hale Underground Station. The space is easily accessible from all over London; Tottenham Hale is served by Victoria line and National Rail/Overground services, and just one stop away from Liverpool street.
WHO ARE WE?
SEBASTIAN EDGE – Sebastian is the founder and builder of the NLD. He studied photography at Maidstone Art College and worked with this medium for over ten years, building his own equipment and incorporating 19th Century photographic processes in his practice. Selected shows include Pure Arts Gallery curated by Dr. Nigel Green (2013), Margate Photo Festival (2012), 'Holding Time' at the Bhaven (2010), The Powerhub Maidstone (2009).
Between 2007 and 2012 Sebastian travelled around the UK with his Darkvan, a portable darkroom that enabled him to develop the glass negative plates of his 18x22'' self-built camera. One of the most notable commissions includes the music band Radiohead. The sales of this prints partially funded the construction of the North London Darkroom. Sebastian started building the North London Darkroom in the summer of 2010, launching it in 2011. His work has always involved a DIY ethic, and the Darkroom became the opportunity to build and extend that ethos to others.
TEREZA ZELENKOVA – Tereza is an artist and photographer based in London. She received her MA in Photography from the Royal College of Art in London in 2012. She is a recipient of the 1000 Words Magazine Award 2012, she was shortlisted for the Saatchi New Sensations 2012 award, and was finalist of Fresh Faced & Wild Eyed 2011 awarded by The Photographer’s Gallery in London.
She has self-published several books and Index of Time (2012) was selected as one of the best books of 2012 by Photo-Eye. Tereza has exhibited in museums and galleries worldwide, and her work is in collections such as the Saatchi Gallery, Foto-museum Winterthur, and Brad Feuerhelm’s collection.
JONATHAN DUCKWORTH - Jonathan is a London-based artist and photographer. He graduated with a BA in Fine Arts from the Victorian College of the Arts of Melbourne in 2007.
Past projects include: ‘The Devolution Project’ curated by Mark Feary and Simon Maidment at West Space Melbourne and the University Gallery of Southern Queensland Toowoomba, ‘We Must Support Ourselves’ curated by Danielle Freakley at Spacement Gallery Melbourne, ‘The Melbourne Connection’ curated by Sherry McLane Alejos at Museo de Leon Mexico, ‘Do It’ exhibition series initiated by Hans-Ulrich Obrist Margaret Lawrence Gallery Melbourne, ‘Morals’ Feltspace Adelaide.
JOLANTA DOLEWSKA – Jolanta is a London-based artist and photographer. She received her MA in Photography (Fine Art) from the Royal College of Art of London in 2012.
Jolanta has exhibited in galleries and museums nationally and internationally. Selected exhibitions include Construct at Folkestone Triennial (2011), High Altitude, Festival de photographie de montagne in Rossinière, Switzerland (2011), GROUP 2012 at WW Gallery, London (2012), Daegu Photo Biennale in South Korea (2012), Belfast Photo Festival (2013) and Fresh Faced & Wide Eyed at the Photographers Gallery (2013). Dolewska's photographic works have been published in High Altitude by 5 Continents, Milan (2011) and Seeing for others by Black Dog Publishing, London (2012). She has received Reginald Salisbury Photographic Bursary (2006), Constance Fairness Foundation Prize (2011) and The Photographers' Gallery Award (2012).
CAROLYN CHAPMAN – Carolyn has been composing flat, graphic, and highly contrasted black and white photographs since she found and adopted a neglected 1972’s Canon FT Camera, some 15 years ago. She currently lives and works in London Carolyn experiments widely with alternative printing processes.
She is a proficient user of liquid light photographic emulsion, a material difficult to master, which allows most surfaces to become a photograph. Her photography captures patterns from her urban environment, inviting the viewer to analyse the symbols and rigidities of a man-made world in which one is living.
VISH – Vish is a London-based photographer specialising in reportage and portrait photography.
He has drunk tea on the side of a highway with nomadic goat herders in the remote regions of India, nearly fallen into an active volcano in Tanzania, been stoned by cricket-playing kids in the slums of Mumbai, driven through the eye of a tropical storm in Guatemala, watched kid boxers fight in the shabby gyms of Cuba, been kidnapped and jailed by the Israeli navy, shuddered at being shown a 10mm Prince Albert, crashed motorcycles through estate agents' windows, and is still here to tell the tale.
TIM BRADSHAW - Tim is a London-based photographer.
He grew up on a farm surrounded by decaying agricultural machinery in half-derelict buildings. While he was distracted by less interesting things the landscape of his childhood was stolen and replaced by a sanitised copy of itself, suitable for commuters and tourists. He is interested in making pictures of the remaining fragments of this lost place.
GABRIEL VIGO - Gabriel specialises in portrait photography, using a particular blend of cityscapes and natural settings as backgrounds. Gabriel’s systematic study of the medium allows him to transfer his own interpretation of the interaction between people, their immediate environments and the camera onto a fine print. His career in psychology further influences Gabriel’s views on people’s perspective on life and its relationship with time. He consistently seeks to represent this in his portraits. Firmly dedicated to the special qualities of the analogue photographic process, Gabriel’s darkroom work has shaped into a distinguishable portraiture style.
IS NORTH LONDON DARKROOM A BUSINESS OR A CHARITY?
The North London Darkroom is a social enterprise structured as a for-profit company.
While the increasing costs of analog materials threaten the future of darkrooms, the space has been created with the social aim of providing photographers an efficiently run and affordable space to keep producing darkroom prints.
Money however is not the main drive behind why the Darkroom was set up. We are committed to reinvesting profit back into both the maintenance of the space and the future expansion that will support the needs of the current NLD members and many new ones!
WHY DO WE NEED YOU?
When I opened the North London Darkroom in 2012, right in the middle of the UK recession, the future of this space was rapidly questioned and I tried my best to prove otherwise. I am now very pleased to say that the photographers that work here currently, help secure the stability of the darkroom and fully cover its monthly expenses.
So we have the skills, the equipment, the work of 8 incredible photographers and the passion to make this happen. But we also need the money to develop this project further and both fund the show and print the publication, reflecting the contemporary understanding and approaches to analog photography and printing processes.
We need to raise £4000 to make this project real and as a key part of this, your money will go towards:
• The rent of both Hume and Apricot spaces at the Rag Factory in Brick Lane
• Covering the costs of the printing of 'GRAIN', our publication
• Installation materials and packaging
• Opening night
• Flyers and posters
Your help will also be vital to evaluate and support the craftsmanship of photographic printmaking, fostering the present artistic representation of the medium enough to ensure it a durable future.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
You can help us by both making a pledge and by telling people about the North London Darkroom, spreading the voice about our projects and about this campaign.
1. Making a pledge. We need to reach our target before the ending of our 6 week campaign, so if you want this project to happen please make a pledge and help us in reaching that goal. Anything helps, and besides the rewards we offer, we will be eternally grateful to you!
2. Telling people about the NLD and its crowdfunding campaign. Following us on Twitter and liking us on Facebook, maybe sharing this campaign from time to time will also help. Show your friends our website, or send them a link to this page. By spreading the word you'll be helping us to find other potential supporters.
WHAT IS IN IT FOR YOU?
1. Rewards - We want to cater for a diverse and wide audience. So we have created a really inclusive and diverse list of rewards. These are for not only professional photographers, but also practitioners, enthusiasts, collectors and photography lovers!
So please give us what you can and we will not disappoint you!
All of our rewards include a thank you letter, a North London Darkroom postcard signed by all members and of course a copy of 'GRAIN'.
By pledging £15 you will be able to enter our competition and submit your very own photographs. The 8 members will then select 8 photographers that will get to show their work alongside ours at the Rag Factory. For more details regarding the competition elemant of this pledge, please click on the following link: ENTER YOUR PRINTS
Rewards also include exclusive collectable prints, portfolio reviews and a variety of practical workshops lead by some of the NLD members. These are for both inexperienced and advanced practitioners and are introductory to darkroom techniques and alternative processes as well as to the making of a photo story.
...And for a vastly generous pledge, Sebastian will build your own medium format darkroom at your home or studio!
2. Gratification - By supporting our campaign, you’ll be gratified for being such a crucial help in making this happen! We will be eternally thankful and your name will appear in our ‘Support’ page on the North London Darkroom website.
WHEN DO I PAY?
If you sign up now through Go Cardless, your money will only be taken once we meet 100% of our funding target. It works like a one-off direct debit. If we don't reach our target then you don't pay, but if we do then your money will automatically be taken from your account.
Alternatively, you can pay via PayPal.
DO WE ACCEPT PLEDGES FROM OUTSIDE THE UK?
Of course we can! But only material rewards can be sent all over the world, workshops and portrait experiences will only take place in London.
You can pay via PayPal, but please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any question.
You can explore our website by clicking the following link: www.londondarkroom.com
GOT A QUESTION? CONTACT US!
If you have any questions or you need any further clarification, please do not hesitate to contact us. Someone will promptly reply and help you in the best way we can!
+44 (0) 7928719796
North London Darkroom
Milmead Industrial Center, Tottenham Hale
From Sebastian, Elena and all the North London Darkroom members.