Brigstow Research Commission Annoucement

The Bristol Photo Festival and the Brigstow Institute are delighted to announce a joint commission to fund two interdisciplinary research projects that seek to use photography as a research method: “We Are Still Here: Stories from the HIV and AIDs Community” and “Bringing the War Home II”.

The two projects are very much in line with Bristol Photo Festival’s ethos: developing multidisciplinary collaborations, encouraging long term engagement and tackling relevant socio-political issues, said Alejandro Acín, Bristol Photo Festival Engagement and Education Director. ‘We are very excited to see these research projects develop and their final display as part of the first edition of the festival.’

Professor Tim Cole, Director of the Brigstow Institute, said that the projects offer a chance for people who have not worked together before ‘bring their diverse expertise to play in a new research partnership.’

“We Are Still Here: Stories from the HIV and AIDs Community” seeks to explore how visual representations of living spaces offer an insight into the lived experiences and mental wellbeing of people in the HIV/Aids community in the UK.  The project is a collaboration between Dr Adrian Flint (University of Bristol, SPAIS), Mareike Günsche (Photographer at Aspectus and State University of Arts in Ulan Bator, Mongolia) and Martin Burns (Writer, HIV/AIDS activist and equality advocate).

Martin Burns in his chair is by Mareike Guensche

“Bringing the War Home II” will seek to expand the current understandings of war, and what makes war possible through a perspective from home. Bringing the War Home II involves, Dr Elspeth Van Veeren (University of Bristol, SPAIS), Dr Miriam Snellgrove (Stirling University), Edmund Clark (Photographer, University of Arts London), and Olu Osinoiki (Photographer at Olumedia).

Both projects seek to use creative research methodology as a sensitive form of exploration into what it means to live well in the 21st century and demonstrate the breadth of meanings given to the places we call ‘home’ and the diverse research questions that can be explored through the living spaces.

The final exhibitions for both research projects will take place as part of the Bristol Photo Festival in 2021.

Read more about the research commission here.

Photo: Elspeth Van Veeren.