To launch the Still Life series, we connected with a group whose absence during social distancing has been dearly felt – CCP's community of volunteers. Along with providing vital support in the delivery of our exhibitions and programs, volunteers bring their unique interests, experience, and skills to day-to-day activities in the gallery. Many are photographers themselves, so in this period of gallery closure, what better time to celebrate their continued practice?
The still life genre is a rich source of inspiration and practice for photographers, from Olive Cotton’s iconic Tea cup ballet, circa 1935, to Janina Green's hand-coloured works from the late 1980s and contemporary practice by Ali McCann. Interpretations of the theme vary — some scenes appear highly staged, others almost accidental. Encompassing this diversity, still life photographs share in common their fascination with the power of the object to invoke emotion. Responding to the current era of isolation, CCP's Still Life contemplates the home as a place of inspiration, practice and display.