A new exhibition of photographs of Vietnam by Armidale-based photographer Tim Barnsley opens at the New England Regional Art Museum on Friday 30 March 2012 at 6pm.
Titled ‘chụp ảnh’, which translated from Vietnamese into English means to be photographed, to take a photograph, this stand-out show tells a story about life in post-war Vietnam.
Barnsley has captured the essence of Vietnam through humorous, engaging and sometimes startling images of the people and places. His sense of design and colour combined with a journalist’s eye for the unusual, results in images of exceptional beauty.
“My Vietnam experience began with my fascination as a kid with a Kodak camera in the ‘70s, pawing over endless editions of Time, National Geographic and Life magazines. I was both amazed and horrified at the works of photojournalists like Larry Burrows, Nick Ut, Henry Huet, Phillip Jones Griffiths, Eddie Adams and the others who worked in this era, “says Barnsley. “I was too young to fully understand the impact of war and wasn’t even sure where Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia was but the images of this period put me on the path of becoming a photojournalist and gave me my love for reportage.”
Barnsley has worked as a professional photographer for several decades, shooting images for various newspapers and magazines, as well as for commercial projects for local, national and overseas clients. In 2009 he moved to Ho Chi Minh City (or Saigon) with his wife and 2 children. There, he says, he documented his impressions of a vibrant and beautiful country during peace time, discovering that “while the horrors of war have thankfully faded in the past 40 years, their scars remained.”
The photographs in this exhibition illustrate the message, Barnsley found emblazoned on T-shirts sold in Vietnamese markets: “Vietnam is a Country not a War”.
All the works on display are for sale.