Mersea Island, Essex
Colour photograph mounted on aluminium2002
About the work
This picture of the island of Mersea is part of a series of six photographs entitled 'All Yesterday's and Today's', taken of locations in the east of England by the Norfolk-based photographer Mark Edwards. While the island fosters the image of a lively holiday location, Edwards portrays it in a different light. The sublime view he presents of the vast and deserted Mersea beach is at once bleak and beautiful, setting the tone for an austere reverence for the natural world. Edwards sourced the locations for each photograph by looking at an Ordnance Survey map and pinpointing places of interest. He visited each chosen location at different times of year, becoming accustomed to the landscape and its seasonal changes. The photographs were taken using a large-format camera, a tripod and a stepladder, referencing the pioneering landscape photography of the nineteenth century. This time-consuming process is evident in the distinct lack of action in the photographs, taken in soft, even light and empty of human characters. The high viewpoints make us feel as though we are somehow not imposing ourselves on the landscape.
Mark Edwards was born in 1965. He studied for a postgraduate diploma in photography at De Montfort University in 1997 and the following year continued on at the University to study for an MA. Recent exhibitions have included 'Kettle's Yard Open' at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge, in 2002, and 'Traces and Elements' at the Bend in the River Gallery, Gainsborough, in 1996.
About the artist
Mark Edwards was born in 1965. He studied photography at De Montfort University, Leicester between 1997–98, since when he has exhibited his work in solo and group exhibitions in the UK. Shows include These Valued Landscapes, a group exhibition at Oriel Davies Gallery, Powys (2008–09); and Disturbances, a solo show at BCA Gallery, Bedford (2005). In 2008 Edwards participated in the Fourth Lianzhou International Photo Festival in China, with a joint exhibition shared with Nadav Kander. Works by Edwards are represented in the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A), London, as well as several private collections. In 2007 he was commissioned by the V&A to produce The V&A 150th Anniversary Album. Recent exhibitions include The Ground on Which We Walk at the Waterfront Gallery, University Campus Suffolk, Ipswich and Island Stories; Fifty Years of Photography in Britain, V & A Museum, London (both 2013).
Mark Edwards (1965 - )
- Mersea Island, Essex
- Series Title
- All Our Yesterdays and Todays
- Colour photograph mounted on aluminium
- Joint commission by GAC, Commissions East and the Government Office for the East of England (GO-East) for the GO-East offices, Cambridge, September 2002
- the artist (commission)
- GAC number