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Interview

Garry Loughlin: "My interests lie in the use of power, and the control of narratives and territories"

text:
Futures Photography
Date:
November 6, 2020
“I am driven by unearthing micro-histories and the discovery of elements that can link series of events that might initially seem isolated.” Meet Garry Loughlin, nominated for Futures by PhotoIreland Festival.

Garry Loughlin is a lens-based artist whose work is research-driven, incorporating photography, writing and archival material. His work can meet his audience in various formats and he is increasingly interested in formats which relate to or challenge notions of objective truth, such as publications and performance lectures.

In this interview, he talks about his career and inspirations:

The documentary photographer Adam Broomberg mentored five Futures Talents over the three months running up to Unseen Amsterdam 2019
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Can you tell us a little bit about your inspirations? Which themes do you often work with?

My interests lie in the use of power, and the control of narratives and territories by those with that power. I am driven by unearthing micro-histories and the discovery of elements that can link series of events that might initially seem isolated.

How do you see your relationship with the medium? How do you use photography to express your art?

Photography is at the centre of my practice, although I am slowly introducing new elements as I expand into various forms of delivery. Photography has become a tool for me to communicate my research into a visual narrative. Working primarily with photography allows me to employ the language of documentary to challenge the perceived authority of the indexical image and its role in the distribution of history.

Do you have any ongoing (or more recent) project that you would like to share with us?

I am currently working on a book of my project The Clearing House. I have also begun researching a new project looking at methods of distraction and control implemented by governments and other bodies of power. I also have two separate collaborations coming up which I am looking forward to. I have never worked with another artist on a project before and I’m excited to see the outcome.

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We have been facing a lot of challenges this year. How do you see this moment for art? Is it changing your practice?

It is a strange time for art, and generally. It can be a struggle at the best of times, and it has gotten a lot worse for a lot of people. A lot of galleries and museums may not open again after this. On the other side of the coin, there is more accessibility to talks, institutions and people via online platforms. The possibilities for me to travel to produce work is now limited and may continue to be for a long time after this. With this in mind I have had to adjust the way I produce work in order to ensure I can do it within my own vicinity. This is a new challenge I keenly embrace.

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What do you expect from this experience as a Futures talent?

Futures talent is a great opportunity to meet fellow artists, professionals and institutions from all across Europe. It also offers a great level of support to all the artists involved, helping in the growth of their practice. I expect to be inspired and motivated in finding new ways to expand my visual language.

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