Bi Nam

Raoofe Roostami, 2010, Tehran, Iran

Raoofe Roostami, 2010, Tehran, Iran

Image and Identity in Iran

Raz Golestani, Hadise Hosaini, Mehregan Kazemi, Amak Mahmoodian, Sharare Mossavi, Raoofe Roostami, Mohsen Shahmardi, Arya Tabandepoor,  Mohsen Yazdipoor

8 – 29 April 2016 at Bristol SU, Richmond Building.

Bi Nam will be the first show in the UK representing the work of a group of contemporary Iranian photographers. The photographic and video content of the exhibition explores the cultural and social life of modern Iran, with an emphasis on religion, gender and identity. Using a structure that evokes the classic Middle Eastern collection of stories One Thousand and One NightsBi Nam explores the subtleties of everyday life in contemporary Iran and specific codes of conduct that influence a person’s mood, behaviour, relationships and sense of self. There is an undertow of sadness and longing, but also one of beauty, love and devotion. Amak Mahmoodian, one of the participating artists and the exhibition curator, describes the exhibition as ‘quiet thoughts from modest photographers for whom the essence of culture is in the display of their works’.

Bi Nam is developed in partnership with the University of Wales, Newport and the European Centre for Photographic Research.


Arturas Valiauga | IN TRUST – Reframing Wales’ Stories

7. Arturas Valiauga_Mr. Brian Forster_Tasting Day_Entrance to the Hall_Tredegar House_2014 copy

From IN TRUST – Reframing Wales’ Stories, 2014 © Arturas Valiauga

16 April – 29 May

In July 2014, Lithuanian photographer Arturas Valiauga visited four National Trust properties in Wales as part of his European Prospects residency with Ffotogallery. At Dyffryn Gardens, Tredegar House, Plas Newydd and Penrhyn Castle he encountered the private and public faces of these historic places and the men and women who make up the community of people who look after them today. Thanks to the generous access granted by the National Trust Wales and the help given by its staff and volunteers, Valiauga was able to explore the four houses in all their aspects – behind the scenes and after closing time. His images encapsulate a moment in time in the lives of these places, which have since outlived those that built them. His quiet, poetic photographs celebrate the commitment of the people who ‘serve’ these houses and offer us a privileged insight.

Arturas Valiauga (b. 1967) lives and works in Vilnius, Lithuania. His work deals with themes of social identity and the passing of time. Valiauga graduated from Vilnius College of Technologies and Design and went on to gain a Masters degree in Photography and Media Art at Vilnius Art Academy. Since 1992 he has been a member of the Union of Lithuanian Art Photographers and in 2003 he established Fotoprojektai, the first studio of advertising photography in Lithuania. The artist is represented by Eglė Deltuvaitė at the Lithuanian organisation Culture Menu.

We would like to thank the National Trust Wales for their generous support of this project, and the Lithuanian Cultural Institute and the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania, London.

Related Events

Exhibition Opening & Artist Talk / Friday 15 April 2016 / from 6pm / Free

Tea & Cake Tuesday / Tuesday 19 April 2016 / 11am – 4pm / Free – Drop in

Bi Nam – An evening with Lina Hashim and Amak Mahmoodian

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Ffotogallery is very excited to present a talk in collaboration with IC-Visual Lab and the University of Bristol as part of the Bi Nam show at Bristol SU – an evening with Lina Hashim and Amak Mahmoodian.

28 April 2016 7pm

Entry Fee £4 / £2 for ICVL members (pay on the door)

Taking place at Bristol SU, Richmond Building, 105 Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1LN

Click here to join the Facebook event.


Bi Nam at Bristol SU

Screen Shot 2016-03-17 at 11.20.31

Bi Nam at Bristol SU

8 – 29 April 2016

Ffotogallery touring exhibition Bi Nam is showing at Bristol SU, Richmond Building, 105 Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1LN.

There will be a discussion with curator and participating artist Amak Mahmoodian, and Danish-Iraqi artist Lina Hashim, on 28 April from 7pm.

Diffusion 2015 – Looking For America


Diffusion 2015 — Looking for America was the second biennial Cardiff International Festival of Photography. Between 1-31 October 2015, some 30 exhibitions were presented across 20 venues in Cardiff, with a Diffusion extension programme till 22 November featuring presentations by five artists at Wales Millennium Centre and A&B Oriel in Cardiff Bay.

Diffusion 2015 attracted 80,698 exhibition visitors, and 1564 participants in workshops, events and projects.

The festival featured work by prominent international artists such as Todd Hido, Will Steacy, Jeff Brouws, Dave Jordano, Jona Frank, Stacy Kranitz, Serge Clement, George Barber, Arthur Tress, David Magnusson, Julian Germain and Martin Parr, and work by established and emergent Wales-based artists such as David Hurn, Tony Othen, Roger Tiley, Jack Latham, Clementine Schneidermann, Bandia Ribeira, Janire Najera, Matt Wright, Pete Evans and Faye Chamberlain.

There was an extensive accompanying learning and public engagement programme that included an international symposium, portfolio review event, bilingual Welsh-English publications and learning resources, artist-led workshops, talks and events, guided tours for school and college groups and various family orientated participatory events. At the invitation of Ffotogallery, The Caravan Gallery undertook a hugely successful month-long residency during the festival as part of their national Pride of Place tour, based at The Abacus but travelling in their mobile gallery to various locations in and around the city to directly work with local communities.

The festival also provided a platform for the Tu Fewn commission of disabled artist Zoe Partington, engaging disabled artists and participants in the festival, and exciting public realm projects such as the Ffotomatic vending machines sited around the city.

Browse the festival documentation at re:Diffusion and watch the Diffusion 2015 final movie here


Hidden Presence


In partnership with Chepstow Museum and the University of the West of England, Ffotogallery and the artist Eva Sajovic have been working with participants in schools and community groups in Monmouthshire, Cardiff and Neath to produce an exhibition and interactive online platform inspired by the life of Nathaniel Wells.

Nathaniel Wells was the son of a slave owner and enslaved woman, who through an extraordinary series of events progressed from the sugar plantations of the West Indies to a position of high social standing and wealth in 19th Century Britain. Taking his life as inspiration, and the complex moral issues that surrounded it, the project creatively challenges the notion that forced labour and the global exploitation of people is confined to our history, rather than something that continues to effect everyday life here in Wales.

The schools and groups explored the social history of Wales’ international trade links, and what it means to be Welsh – particularly for people who for social, racial or economic reasons feel outside of mainstream society. Through exploration of the importance of Nathaniel’s life in the context of contemporary society, the work presented here hopes to raise awareness of the rich cultural history of the area and to generate discussion around ethnicity, contemporary forms of slavery and its legacy.

The project also encouraged young adults to explore their own experiences and ideas surrounding exploitation, including sexual exploitation, through writing and image making. It fostered thought around the use of photography and film in social media, in terms of ownership and vulnerability.

The project has been followed by the Hidden Presence blog, which documented the process and displayed snippets of the work on an ongoing basis. The resulting work can be viewed on the Hidden Presence website.
The Hidden Presence exhibition is on show at Chepstow Museum from 6 February to mid-April 2016

Current News


Current News

Ffotogallery exhibitions on tour  – Eva Sajovic’s work produced for Hidden Presence  is at Chepstow Museum from 6 February until mid-April, to be followed by Julian Germain.  Bi Nam – Image and Identity in Iran will show at Richmond House, Bristol University from 1 – 22 April.

Three of the artists shown at Diffusion 2015 have since won major awards. Dave Jordano won the Canadian $50,000 Aimia Photography Prize, John Paul Evans won a Hasselblad Masters Award 2016 and Jack Latham won the Bar Tur Photobook Award 2015


Coming Soon

7. Arturas Valiauga_Mr. Brian Forster_Tasting Day_Entrance to the Hall_Tredegar House_2014 copy

Arturas Valiauga | IN TRUST – Reframing Wales’ Stories

16 April – 29 May

Tuesday – Saturday 11am – 5pm

Ffotogallery, Turner House, Plymouth Road, Penarth, CF64 3DH

In July 2014, Lithuanian photographer Arturas Valiauga visited four National Trust properties in Wales as part of his European Prospects residency with Ffotogallery. At Dyffryn Gardens, Tredegar House, Plas Newydd and Penrhyn Castle he encountered the private and public faces of these historic places and the men and women who make up the community of people who look after them today.

Find out more

Wales in Venice


Wales in Venice

The Cymru yn Fenis/Wales in Venice 2015 presentation is …the rest is smoke by artist Helen Sear, a Collateral Event of the 56th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. Commissioned by the Arts Council of Wales and curated by Ffotogallery.

…the rest is smoke comprises a suite of new work conceived for and presented in five discrete spaces within the Santa Maria Ausiliatrice, a church and former convent in the Castello area of Venice. The title of the exhibition is taken from an inscription in Mantegna’s last painting of St. Sebastian, now housed in the Ca’ d’Oro in Venice: Nihil nisi divinum stabile est. Caetera fumus.

Our accompanying website offers a unique insight into …the rest is smoke exhibition from its development process and installation to the launch week itself. We are making available a wealth of resources for online audiences, such as artist interviews, documentation of the exhibition as it evolves, a gallery of works, essays, as well sound and photography that capture the excitement of the Venice Biennale.

Experience Wales in Venice provides a platform for the team of 15 artists who are managing the venue through its 7 month exhibition to tell their own stories about their experience of working as part of the Biennale and engaging with international audiences, in a variety of ways including drawing, writing, photography, video and interactive media.



And Now It’s Dark…

© Will Steacy

© Will Steacy

1 st October- 28th November

And Now It’s Dark focuses on the ways that light transforms the darkness. Whether subsumed or illuminating, the presence of light is often revelatory, literally revealing what is hidden or drawing attention to what is often overlooked or unacknowledged. The three photographers, gathered here for the first time in the UK, have been drawn to places and spaces at night and in darkness actively charged by the transformative power of light.

Jeff Brouws’ peripatetic road journeys through the US form a crucial role in his ‘mapping’ of a changing American landscape. Bouws captures the glow of headlamps and neon, the illuminated attractions and distractions of the American roadside, which combine to produce a troubling picture of commercial encroachment and reshaping of the landscape.

Will Steacy’s project, Down These Mean Streets, is the culmination of a series of ‘night walks’ made by the photographer from a variety of regional airports to the financial centres of nearby cities. Steacy’s work confronts the economic hinterlands, abandoned places and ‘peripheral’ resident populations seemingly forgotten or ignored by mainstream American politics.

Although less overtly political in tone, Todd Hido’s night photographs are imbued with a psychological tension and emotional drama that underpin the suburban landscape, a landscape borne of the post-World War II economic boom in 1950s America.

And Now It’s Dark has been curated by Dr. Mark Rawlinson, Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Nottingham, with Neil Walker (Head of Visual Arts Programming, Djanogly Gallery), and was first shown at the Djanogly Gallery, Nottingham Lakeside Arts, in 2014.

This exhibition is part of Diffusion, the 2015 Cardiff International Festival of Photography. For more information on the other exhibitions in the festival, please visit the Diffusion website.

Related Events

Tea & Cake Tuesday / December 1st 2015 / 11am to 4pm / Free