If you are into photography exhibitions in any way and you have an interest, however loose,in skateboarding then this exhibition is for you. Before I go any further I should point out that this is not a run-of-the-mill framed photograph show. It is, as the organisers explain "an exhibition about a book of photographs rather than an exhibition of the photographs found within the book." They have reduced the book down to what is a 'grid of spreads' that span the gallery so that the viewer can see the images as they appear in the book. Uhm, different, and well, clever!
The book of photographs by Richard Gilligan is called DIY and records skate environments in the USA and Europe often made of found materials to make temporary constructions or by adapting abandoned urban areas.
*Let me explain that my own interest as the writer of this article goes way back to the early 80s when my brothers got skateboards and built their first ramp of scrap wood in our driveway, went to a BMX/skate site in Hackney and made my parents drive to the suburbs of Los Angeles on our holiday to buy Vans. The 2001 docu-movie Dogtown and Z- Boys, a great history of how the Santa Monica skaters first came together, breaking into abandoned backyard swimming pools, later to become celebrity skaters when picked up by the corporate sponsors revived this interest.
This book looks really great. The exhibition is only on until 26th October so if you're interested catch it quick. The book is for sale in the gallery and at www.1980editions.com