The Aesthetics of Absence

13 – 26 October 2021
Trinity 7 Art Space, 7 Trinity Street, Hastings TN34 1HG
Opening times: Tues – Fri 11-5 | Sat – Sun 11-6
Private View – Friday 15 October 7-9pm

As part of the Photohastings season we are pleased to present Objects of Life-An Exhibition of Still Life Photography.

Participants: Alexander Brattell | Alison Bettles | Amanda Jobson | Chris Coombes | Derek Cottrell | Louise Whitham and Jude Cowan Montague | Irina Brook | Richard Butchins | Robin Hutt

As part of the Photohastings season we are pleased to present Objects of Life – An Exhibition of Still Life Photography.

Be it depictions of flowers, fruit or inanimate objects each artist has uniquely approached the theme exploring and celebrating the genre of the still life either by observation, encounter or arrangement. The very term “still life”, becomes imbued with a more existential layer of meaning with the use of allegory and symbolism within the images that allude to the transience of life and the impermanence of worldly sensations. Though the image is a moment of perfection, stillness or beauty we know that what is depicted is not the objects themselves, but the passage of time and of ephemeral nature.

Image Credit: Lens on Paper, 2021 © Alexander Brattell
Information Facebook: Trinity 7 Gallery

Online Gallery

Of All Likenesses by Alison Bettles

Alison Bettles

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Title : Of All Likenesses
Date : 2012

My photographic practice consistently questions the relationship between the sculptural and the photographic. Using found, familiar objects I create ephemeral installations and scenarios for my picture making exploring how one medium is implicated in the analysis and creative redefinition of the other.

Information: Alison Bettles Website | @alisonbettles

Floracide: Momento Mori by Richard butchins

Richard Butchins

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Title : Momento Mori

From the Floracide: series. This picture is based on roadside Catholic shrines – which are a form of living Vanitas. I remember seeing shrines all along the roads of Southern Europe as a child, and wondering who put them there and why? They evoke melancholy and nostalgia. The flowers in the shrines were always withered and dead. I let the dahlias and sunflowers die, as all cut flowers do, then added some other dying flowers, fairies, feathers and fantasy beliefs, which somehow control peoples short lives. Votive beeswax candles and clockwork death. These are frozen images of decay.

Information: Richard Butchins Website  |  @thewitheredhand


Foeniculum Vulgare purpureum from Fairlight End Garden by Robin Hutt

Robin Hutt

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Title : Foeniculum Vulgare purpureum from Fairlight End Garden
Date : 2016

This fennel plant was taken inside from my garden, Fairlight End in Pett, just outside Hastings, to photograph. The process of capturing the fennel, with intense lighting, lead to the accelerated death of the plant. The result is a capturing of life at the moment it is coming to an end, suggesting ideas surrounding still life as a form-vanitas or nature morte-and photography as a medium.

Information: Robin Hutt Website  |  @robinlahutt

The Aesthetics of Absence - Lens on Paper by Alexander Brattell

Alexander Brattell

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Title : Lens on Paper
Date : 2021

This still life photograph is from my 2021 series The Aesthetics of Absence in which they act as an inner voice or commentary on atmospheres found in the other pictures of domestic interiors, the built environment and beyond.

Information: Alexander Brattell Website | @alexanderbrattell

Discarded Disregarded Degraded by Chris Coombes

Chris Coombes

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Title : Discarded Disregarded Degraded
Date : 2021

I want to convey with my images is that we all create waste and are collectively responsible. The mood is a subtle reminder of the reality and scale of our consumerism. In each sequence of images, blurring was employed as the visual language to portray a physical timeline from discarded waste to decay. Just as if the waste were buried in the landfill, each triptych depicts the gradual degradation from freshly discarded waste on the surface, through to the intermediate breakdown in the subsoil, and down to the virtually obscured remains in the bedrock.

The narrative can be seen from two perspectives: vertically, illustrating a gradual dematerialisation, and horizontally, depicting the different strata. The overall effect is to portray a whole swathe of contamination.

Information: Chris Coombes Website |

Un Morte by Amanda Jobson

Amanda Jobson

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Title : Un Morte
Date : 2019

Amanda Jobson is an award-winning visual artist and community worker. Using analogue photography, camera less alternative printing, her practice looks upon our natural environment. Having spent three years creating a woodland community garden for young people and families, growing food for wellbeing and food poverty. Amanda has managed community and artist led projects and commissions with support from arts council UK, The National Lottery Fund and Sussex Community Foundation.

Information: Amanda Jobson Website  |  @amanda_jobson

My Mother's hands, and then they were still.. by Irina Brook

Irina Brook

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Title : My Mother’s hands, and then they were still..

Information: @irinajanebrook


As Feather by Derek Cottrell

Derek Cottrell

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Title : As Feather

as feather
as light
as falls
so falls I
as light
as still
so still I

D. Cottrell

There are many analogies that could made be regarding this image. Perhaps it could represent the grief associated with the passing of a loved one. Or, the feathers might simply depict human vulnerability and tenderness. The intention was to show the dialogue between our inner and outer being. The falling feather portrays how that relationship is forever changing. Less obvious perhaps, the words and picture tell us that consciousness is always present if one chooses to acknowledge it.

Information: Derek Cottrell Website  |  @derekcottrell 

Lies Camera Action by Louise Whitham and Jude Cowan Montague

Louise Whitham & Jude Cowan Montague

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Title : Lies Camera Action
Date : 2021

The discourse of objects, our personification of them and their relationships is re-imagined through the lens of 20th century Dada and surrealist theatre. Our subtext is the female experience, personal expression as decoration and pot. In the second of our two pictures two fake jugs regard the screen with outrage. In the first, bags and cardboard cover the faces of two women, their identity buried beneath a rough image of still life objects, their conversation simplified to gestural nonsense. The two pictures and audio represent a call to action. There is still time to join the suffragette sisters in a new generation of collaborative art activism.

Video : Gallery Performance

Video : The Status of Women in the Art World in the early 1900’s

Information: Louise Whitham Website | @louisewhithamphotography
Jude Cowan Montague Website | @judemontague_

Supported By

Trinity Seven Gallery
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