Seven year old Carmen Soth will be exhibiting her work at the Brighton Photo Biennial, October 2– November 14 2010. The Biennial, entitled New Documents is curated by Martin Parr.
Of course there’s more to it than that, but I thought I’d bait you with a sensationalist lead. Carmen is the daughter of Alec Soth and while she is the author of the photographs, many were taken under his direction. He also edited the 2000 frames she took in Brighton, into a cohesive body of work.
It all came about after he was told by customs officials in Heathrow that he could face up to two years in prison if he was caught taking photographs without a working visa. If this seems like a giant FU to the UK for not allowing him to work Alec isn’t saying so, but instead asserts that “working with Carmen reminded me that the greatest photography is vernacular. Sometimes, not being professional can be an asset…” In the gravity defying art world I tend to agree with him on that. In The Guardian, where the story on all of this appears (here), he was asked if her photographs are any good to which he replied “Yes, I think they could stand alongside any other professional work.”
Personally, I would have preferred to find out the work was shot by a 7 year old after the exhibit had started and the reviews had come in. That would have been a fascinating experiment.