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Coming soon: Phil Cosker, Landscapes – a particular type of fiction

21st July 2016

An exhibition of large scale photographs will go on display in six churchyards along the Spires & Steeples Arts & Heritage Trail in North Kesteven, Lincolnshire this autumn as part of a major retrospective of three touring exhibitions of Phil Cosker’s work.

Landscapes – a particular type of fiction will be on display between September 18th – October 24th 2016, at All Saints, Branston; All Saints, Nocton; St Peter’s, Dunston; St Oswald’s, Blankney; Holy Cross, Scopwick & St Clement’s, Rowston. Phil Cosker has worked with artsNK to organise the exhibition which will feature single images measuring ten feet by eight in each of six church yards.   Audiences are encouraged to travel between all the locations to see the collection in its entirety.

Cosker made the photographs in Landscape – a particular type of fiction using glass plates exposed in a Thornton Pickard ‘Imperial’ half-plate bellows camera with a 47/8 120mm lens. He found the camera in a second-hand shop; there were dark slides but no film of any sort. By chance he found some unexposed boxes of Ilford Tri-colour plates in a cupboard in Hull School of Art & Design.  After much experimentation he found he could use each plate separately and was able to control exposures to create these images. The six images on show were made between 1982 & 1984.

Cosker says,

“These very large images (magnificently printed by Rob Hodgson at Double Red) try to capture the volume and sense of space in the locations in which they were made. In some ways, though very different in content, they make reference to the beauty and mystery in Atget’s work (the pioneering French photographer 1857-1927). The acuity of the lens and the capture of the passage of time in a still frame offer a particular way of seeing. But of course what we see in these large photographs is not what is, or was there, but a fiction, an imagination of passing time and place. Beyond that – to me they are beautiful – I hope you agree.”

Marion Sander, Visual Arts Development Manager at artsNK commented.

Over the years artsNK has worked with many of the villages along the Spires & Steeples Arts & Heritage trail in conjunction with NKDC and other partners to explore their history and heritage and find creative ways to celebrate and record their stories. We are now delighted to be working with Phil Cosker to bring this new temporary exhibition of photographs to 6 of the churches along the route. The project carries on the ethos of Altered, for which we worked with The University of Lincoln and the Diocese of Lincoln, bringing contemporary art to historic churches across Lincolnshire. We encourage people to visit all the sites in the exhibition, and perhaps enjoy some of the other artworks and village art trails along the Spires & Steeples route at the same time.”

Landscapes – A particular type of fiction is part of three exhibitions of Phil Cosker’s photographic work, with exhibitions also on display in Sam Scorer Gallery in Lincoln and X-Church in Gainsborough. All three retrospective shows will tour to Hull School of Art and Design. For more information about all three shows click here.

For more information about the Spires & Steeples Heritage trail please visit:


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