New East Digital Archive

British photographer unveils exhibition at Multimedia Art Museum Moscow

28 April 2014
Text Nadia Beard

A new exhibition by British photographer Simon Roberts, Landscape Studies of a Small Island, has opened at Multimedia Art Museum Moscow. With a focus on Britain’s shorelines and seaside towns, Roberts’s work presents a naturalistic and unpretentious picture of life in Britain which spans over seven years. This exhibition sees the photographer return to Russia nearly a decade after his year-long travels around the country, in which Roberts took snaps in over 200 locations.

Talking to The Calvert Journal, Roberts said: “I spent a year travelling in Russia between 2004 and 2005 and have been interested in the connection between people and ideas of the Russian landscape. I wanted to explore the same thing with the British landscape, looking at the relationship between people, place and identity.”

Roberts’s travels through Russia in 2004 were a reaction to much of the photography of the country “in which collapse and deterioration were dominant”. He became dedicated to deconstructing established representations of people and landscapes — something that continues to pervade his work. Landscape Studies of a Small Island is no exception, with the portrayal of local elections and sunbathing Brits a representation of the everyday social practices and political scenarios that define British life.

Noting the importance of using photography to distance onerself from political events, Roberts added: “Especially following recent political events in Russia, it’s more important than ever to continue a cultural exchange between Russian and UK so as to keep relations between the countries going.”

Landscape Studies of a Small Island is part of the UK-Russia Year of Culture in 2014, and will be on display until 25 May.