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Exhibitions launch / Jon Tonks and Czesław Siegieda

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former Poundland

Unit 3

Kings Square Shopping Centre

West Bromwich

B70 7NN

United Kingdom

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Join us for a preview of the exhibitions and a celebration of Central and Eastern European culture with
the finest pierogi and folk music.

Jon Tonks / Stories of Home
Jon Tonks' exhibition is a portrait of the Central and Eastern European communities living in Sandwell, home to the biggest Polish population in the UK. The photographs were taken during a two year period against a backdrop of divisive geopolitical rhetoric following the 2016 EU referendum. Thanks to their generosity, the project also reveals much about the cultural identity and hopes and fears for the future of each subject. The series explores a question that reaches beyond borders: what binds a community to make a place home? This project was commissioned by Multistory and supported by Creative Black Country

Jon Tonks is a British photographer living in Bath, UK. His work focuses on telling stories about people’s lives shaped by history and geography. He has been shortlisted for the Taylor Wessing National Portrait Prize three times, twice for the Terry O’Neill award and, in 2014, Tonks was presented with the Vic Odden Award by the Royal Photographic Society for his first book Empire – a journey across the South Atlantic exploring life on four remote British Overseas Territories.

Czesław Siegieda / Polska Britannica
Czesław Siegieda was born in a displaced person's camp at Burton on the Wolds in Leicestershire in 1954. From 1970 until the ‘80s, he photographed members of the Polish community based in the Midlands, portraying them as protagonists of a small 'theatrical world' in search of a lost spiritual homeland. Beginning with intimate views of his family members, he photographed the life and times of a community displaced by war and unable to return to their homeland. His subjects include daily life at home, religious festivals, Polish Saturday school, the Polish boarding schools, remembrance and commemoration.

Czesław Siegieda’s work displays a consistency of imagination and a profound understanding of photographic quality. Born in a Polish refugee camp in the UK, it is this dual perspective of both understanding the desires and pressures felt by a minority culture, and of his ability to give it a poetic photographic expression, which gives his work a distinct flavour and importance.

Blast! is like no other festival because it has been produced with, and for, local people who have collaborated with 40 outstanding photographers and artists to present stories about everyday life. The festival takes place from 24 May to 29 June 2019, and you can find more information on the website
https://www.blastphotofestival.com/

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Location

former Poundland

Unit 3

Kings Square Shopping Centre

West Bromwich

B70 7NN

United Kingdom

View Map

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