Monday, 8 March 2010

Don McCullin @ The Imperial War Museum.

If you are a young photojournalist with aspirations of photographing war & destruction, famine and suffering and think that your pictures are ever going to change the world well this show should show you that you are on a hiding to nothing. If the pictures made by Don MCullin can't change the world, well no ones can.

It's not easy viewing and as the misses said it made you feel a bit dirty walking around looking at the pictures with all the other day trippers. It was a Sunday and busy. There was something for the kids going on at the Quays so lots of them running around with pink balloons. It added to my unease.

Listening to McCullin on the videos you get the feeling that the whole thing makes him uneasy to. He states that he never intended to make Art but he has, and Art as great as anything etched by Goya. Every print in this massive exhibition is hand printed by the 75 year old McCullin in his distinctive dark style.

So could I get over my unease at looking at such images in a gallery setting? Yes, in no small part due to the compassion that McCullin shows his subject and because an Artist as great and as dignified as Don McCullin deserves to have his lifes work seen by as many people as possible.

PS Give his new landscapes a bit of thought.....

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