Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Up & Coming: Chris Bethell

Christopher Bethell’s current practice places him within the sub-culture of Urban Exploration. His work considers the nature of wanting to see the unseen; attempting to evaluate what draws himself and other members of the community to these sites. Christopher tries to communicate the placid atmosphere that is experienced whilst exploring - a feeling that is amplified in such places as (derelict) hospitals in contrast to the noise of active ones.

Photography has changed what is commonly believed to be beautiful. Most would not wish to live (or even be) in these conditions, but once photographed they become an aesthetic fascination. Christopher’s images describe the serene beauty of these buildings and objects that are now devoid of purpose.

Christopher Bethell turned to photography as a means of understanding the world around him  after leaving a dead-end job in Manchester. He returned to Cheshire in order to study on the Foundation Degree in Contemporary Photography at Mid-Cheshire College before moving onto Staffordshire University to top his degree up to a full BA (hons) where he is currently studying.

In 2010 he won first place in the Didsbury Arts Festival photography competition with his 'human typology'. Later, in 2011 one of his photos was selected for the homepage of the Bing Your-Britain competition and another was shortlisted in the national top 20. Again in 2011, Bethell's photograph Kingsway Hospital from the set Urban Exploration was shortlisted and exhibited for the Title Art Prize, organised by Blank Media Collective at Blankspace, Manchester. Within this he came as a runner-up out of the 25 shortlisted artists. To view more of his work please go to: http://christopherbethell.4ormat.com/

All images © Chris Bethell