Art / Photography

Celebrating the city’s communities

By lowie trevena, Wednesday Nov 6, 2019

Acclaimed local photographer Mark Simmons has created an insightful new set of portraits that celebrate life in the city.

Throughout the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s, Mark took a series of portraits that painted a vivid picture of everyday life in Bristol. These pictures were collected together and published in the photobook Bristol Black & White.

They revealed tight-knit communities coming together in uncertain political times. The images also showcased the everyday positivity and togetherness found in some of the city’s most deprived areas, including St Paul’s and Barton Hill.

In his latest work, Bristol 2019: A New Kind of Community, Mark documents the friendships and opportunities being built by the city’s growing community business movement.

“My life’s work has been to document and celebrate community achievements and endeavors,” says Mark. “It’s been a heartwarming privilege to meet and reconnect with the people working in these community enterprises and witness the contribution they’re making to their local neighbourhoods, especially in this time of austerity and palpable uncertainty.”

The collection revisits some of the streets and suburbs that feature in the work he undertook more than 30 years ago and the photos will be exhibited at the Trinity Centre from Wednesday, November 27 to Thursday, December. The exhibition will be free to view.

Mary Laurie, Arnos Vale volunteer

Arnos Vale volunteer Terry Dailes gets on with daily duties

Bristol-based performer Carl Morgan entertains commuters onboard Bristol Ferry Boats

Tony Green of Bristol Bike Project helps the city’s most vulnerable access free bicyles

Captain Mandy Sharman, skipper Ben Freebry and community outreach coordinator Kim Fielding on a Bristol Ferry Boat

CEO Steve Sayers and facilities manager Cameron Cheek at Windmill Hill City Farm

Community business staff and leaders at Southmead Trust

Making friends at Barton Hill Settlement Family Centre

Volunteers and staff at Arnos Vale

Onboard one of the Bristol Ferry Boats

Residents can enjoy community lunches at Barton Hill Community Settlement

Residents of Southmead enjoy active classes

The We Can Make team review plans for the first micro-home

Volunteers at the Fix A Bike workshop

Volunteers at Windmill Hill City Farm

The free pop-up exhibition, Bristol 2019: A New Kind of Community, will take place at the Trinity Centre from November 27-December 5 2019.

Read more: In photos: Bristol Grand Iftar 2019

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