All posts tagged: Newport

Finding birth, death and true equality in NHS waiting rooms

On average, a new patient arrives through the swinging doors of the Accident and Emergency department at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport every six minutes, every single day of the year. Sam Peat, a graduate at the University of South Wales’ highly rated documentary photography course, spent months in Gwent’s A&E, capturing in colour the people who wait in those long, institutional hallways and, in intense monochrome, some of the situations and casualties they deal with. The project, says Peat, aims to explore the challenges facing the NHS. “Sometimes people would stop me in the corridors and ask me to get the doctor to hurry up,” he says on a phone call from his home in Newport. “We have the longest waiting times for a decade, and a lot of A&E departments across the whole of the NHS are understaffed.” In the small hours of the morning, Peat shows nurses working in unspoken unison, as a man with a fractured leg bares his teeth with pain. In another, he shows the streaks and swirls of plaster residue on …

2015-11-03T12:50:44+00:00

A visual journey along the Oregon Trail

The plastic flamingo was designed in 1957 by Don Featherstone. Gloriously kitsch and garishly pink, the garden ornament fast became an icon of Americana. “People would stick it in their astroturf lawn, by their white picket fence, and it was a way of exoticising their landscape,” says Welsh documentary photographer Jack Latham. His debut book takes its title from Featherstone’s design that became a pop culture classic. “I saw the flamingo almost as a parody of the American flag,” Latham explains. “When America planted the flag in the moon, they were saying, this is my land. When people followed the Oregon Trail, moving east to west, they foisted a flamingo in their gardens as though to say, this is my home.” A Pink Flamingo, which launches at Cardiff’s Diffusion Festival this October, takes us on a melancholic, visual journey along the Oregon Trail, a historic route established in the 1830s by fur traders. Since then hundreds of thousands of settlers, missionaries, farmers and gold seekers have trampled across the trail from Missouri to Oregon in …

2015-09-16T14:55:31+00:00

Ken Grant – No Pain Whatsoever

BJP

I was in Ken Grant’s MA class when he was teaching Documentary Photography at Newport in Wales. You’d bring out an unedited mess of pictures and Grant would start talking in his mellifluous poet’s voice, his thoughts weaving in and out of the pictures, connecting music, literature and photographers to them. He touched on places where life shone, where soul came through, and left the rest alone; it was never about you, or the images, but about the wider world, the quiet moments, what you might do and what you could do. Then you’d leave the room, never quite sure what had happened, but always knowing that what mattered was the meaning and the rhythm and the soul, and that what you could do was what you hadn’t done. It was the gentlest of eviscerations. The same poetic thoughtfulness infuses Grant’s photography, much of which is based around his hometown, Liverpool. It is work that, through acclaimed shows at the Format Festival in 2013, and the publication of two books last year, No Pain Whatsoever …

2015-05-11T11:05:19+00:00

BJP Staff