Current Conflicts is an exhibition of recent work by six photographers at the Ruskin Gallery at the Cambridge School of Art, Anglia Ruskin University.
The exhibition aims to engage the public with a series of artists’ responses to ideas around modern warfare, in particular the West’s engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is a very topical subject, through our own research and the work done at seminars we have found that the exhibition provides a forum for debate. We have discovered a public feeling that there is little alternative to thinking about war except within the parameters set out by the media. Concepts such as embedding and citizen journalism do not seem to have resulted in any increased knowledge, empathy or discussion. The artists have built towards two significant markers occurring in 2014; the pullout of NATO troops from Afghanistan and the centenary of the start of the First World War. One of the themes of Current Conflicts is the constant of war in human life. Others include masculinity and war, media representations (and misrepresentations), the aesthetics of war, and landscapes and war. The artists utilise their varied proximity to current conflicts to explore ideas shared by all of us when confronted by the modern notion of war.
Current Conflicts features work by Matthew Andrew, Christopher Down, Richard Monje, Olivia Hollamby, Jamie Simonds and Les Monaghan
On Monday 10 November at 4pm there will be an artists’ talk for our students and the general public.