Pilbara Stories turns a lens on the Pilbara’s people and community, through a photographic and social documentary project that aims to capture stories of people living in Port Hedland and surrounds. Pilbara Stories features portraits that celebrate the diverse heritage, individuality and experiences of everyday life in the Pilbara with a focus on Port Hedland and surrounds.
Over two years FORM has supported leading international photographers Martin Parr, Bharat Sikka, Ketaki Sheth, Annet van der Voort and John Elliot to a develop a multi-perspective and globalising encounter with the region.
FORM undertook interviews and recordings with the subjects that were photographed so that the community could represent themselves. Through sharing the personal stories of people living and working in this region Pilbara Stories unveils a new way of seeing and knowing the Pilbara.
More than 52 different nationalities live in Port Hedland, which owes its unique identity to this rich heritage and culture. For many residents, this cosmopolitanism is Port Hedland’s appeal; a place they feel is built on strong foundations of community, and friendship, where diversity is embraced.
Before I arrived into Port Hedland, I was given many warnings. It’s dirty; it’s ugly and all covered in red dust. The reputation of Port Hedland is not good, to say the least. So you can imagine my very pleasant surprise when I arrived and found it to be one of the most interesting, engaging and surreal towns I had ever experienced. Martin Parr, (UK) Pilbara Stories Magnum Photographer
Annet van der Voort was born in The Netherlands; she currently lives and works in Drensteinfurt, Germany. She has been represented in the Rencontres d’ Arles, France; National Museum of Photography, Bradford, England; Kunsthal Rotterdam, Netherlands; Mois de la Photo, Montréal Canada; Museet for Fotokunst, Odense, Denmark; NGBK, Germany; and Getxo Photo Bilbao, Spain. Her work can be found in numerous books, international publications and public and private collections.www.annetvandervoort.com
Bharat Sikka has a rare mercurial creativity; he photographs landscapes and portraits; moves between the studio and the street; from high-end commercial photography on assignments for magazines such as, Wallpaper, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, I.D, Vogue, Vogue Homme International, Details and Time Magazine to directing advertisements in a cinematic style as a Creative Director. Sikka’s distinct mode of visual storytelling lures the viewer into an illusory world that collapses boundaries between art and life. Bharat Sikka studied at the Parson's School of Design; he has exhibited in the USA, Europe, India and Australia.www.bharatsikka.com
Ketaki Sheth was born in Mumbai, 1957. She began taking pictures on the streets of Mumbai, almost twenty years ago, under the guidance of renowned Indian photographer, Raghubir Singh, and influenced by the work of photographers André Kertész, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Eugène Atget, Walker Evans, Lee Friedlander, and Helen Levitt. She has received the Sanskriti Award for Indian photography (1992) and the Higashikawa Award, Japan (2006) for Best Foreign Photographer. Her works have been exhibited in India, UK, France and Japan. www.photoink.net
Martin Parr is a Magnum photographer who has developed an international reputation for his innovative imagery and social documentary style. The Barbican Art Gallery and the National Media Museum initiated a large retrospective of Parr’s work (2002), Parr was Guest Artistic Director for the Recontres D’Arles (2004) and curated the Brighton Photo Biennial (2010) he was awarded the Erich Salomon Prize (2006) and Parrworld opened at the Haus de Kunst, Munich (2008).www.martinparr.com
John Elliott is an Australian photographer, writer, creative producer and social documentary maker. His work has focused mostly on Australian culture, the bush and music. He has compiled Australia’s most extensive country music photo library and has authored a definitive pictorial history of Australian Country Music. John has been regularly exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery Queensland Art Gallery Canberra, and has been accessioned into major national collections. www.elliottcountry.com
Pilbara Stories will be open at the FORM Gallery from February 8 to April 20, Perth and Courthouse Gallery from February 15 to April 11, Port Hedland.
9am - 5pm Monday to Friday
10am - 5pm Saturday
9am - 430pm Monday to Friday
9am - 2pm Saturday & Sunday