May 24, 2023
May 24, 2023
Our Photography staff have strong ties with organisations such as the Royal Photographic Society and Martin Parr Foundation, yet they are also internationally renowned artists in their own right. Jamie Murray has showcased his creative talent in his newly published photobook, Folly.
Jamie's photographs in Folly were born from a series of conversations he held with people who have been in prison. Most had been in prison over long periods of their life, often multiple times. The conversations included what had led to their punishment, how they navigated the prison environment and transitioned to freedom. In the collection, Jamie explores ideas of discipline and punishment, intertwined with questions around natural order, spirituality and philosophy. The resulting allegorical photographs in Folly refer, both directly and indirectly, to what was said and how these conversations affected Jamie.
Jamie first began talking to the people featured in Folly in an attempt to understand more about their experiences, with the aim of making a documentary series within a prison. As the conversations evolved, so did the project. His encounters led him to reflect upon his own life, choices and history with meandering thoughts and emotions relating to what had been discussed.
Folly has led to Jamie receiving a commission from Port Magazine, a creative biannual magazine and online platform for arts, design, fashion and photography. He was asked to create editorial portraits of Ai Weiwei, which were then shot in Portugal earlier this year.
Port Magazine Photo Director, Naoise O’Keeffe said:
"As a friend and collaborator, it has been so exciting joining Jamie on this journey, watching him develop as a photographer and educator. I am also grateful to have been invited to meet the fantastic students at boomsatsuma, and it must be so enriching for them to almost watch these developments play out in front of their eyes. This is breaking down the barriers of intimidation and inaccessibility of opportunities that usually exist between education and industry."
"I’m very proud to see Folly come to life. Making the images for the photobook required a sensitivity to how I interpreted the ex-prisoners' stories visually. This is also a process that is integral to editorial portraits such as the piece with Ai Weiwei. One of the most exciting aspects of photography is the excuse it gives you to meet, engage with and learn from new people, so I was honoured to receive the commission from Naoise and Port Magazine."
Jamie’s commercial success follows in the footsteps of Samuel Fordham, boomsatsuma’s award-winning Head of Photography, who has hosted international exhibitions in the past year. Sam says:
"It's excellent to see Jamie's work getting the attention and publication it deserves, Folly is a truly excellent body of work, and his commissioned portraits of Ai Weiwei go to show the talent, knowledge and quality Jamie brings to our students on a daily basis. This level of engagement with the industry is invaluable for any student looking to follow their ambition to becoming photographers."