The annual St. John's Central College Photographic Studies’ Graduate Exhibition, 'Catalyst', runs from 31st May to 14th June 2021 at Cork Vision Centre, St. Peter's, North Main Street, Cork. A highlight of the midsummer exhibition calendar in the city, the show is open to the public and free to attend, featuring the work of seven visual artists across a broad range of photographic disciplines.
The Second Year Degree Show is traditionally viewed by the college, and the broader community of Cork, as an occasion for celebration. After two years of intense study, seven graduating students invite the public to witness their professional transformation. Coming from different countries and many parts of Ireland, with diverse backgrounds and approaches to the photographic medium, they are delighted to showcase some of their most recent projects. The work on display comprises of diverse and individually distinct practices, from documentary series with political and social undercurrent to fine art conceptual pieces. This variety of talents and plurality of voices contributes to the college's reputation on the national and international scene - St John's College is a place where creativity and diversity are supported and celebrated.
The exhibition gives a panorama of photographic concepts and practices, executed in a wide range of different photographic media. In general, the common multi-disciplinary approaches among the exhibiting photographers seem to embody the college’s unwritten policy of an open, expressive environment where one is not obliged to choose between the photography disciplines. Many of the present graduates do not fit easily into any of the formal, or even, conceptual categories.
This approach in turn contributes to this year’s unofficial patron – inquiry. In a remote, yet meaningful way, ‘Catalyst’, as a chosen name for this show, embodies the new departures needed in creating work in lockdown, in times of the global pandemic.
The graduating photographers, whose work can be viewed in the show are: