POSTPONED – Invisible Britain: Photography & Representation — Impressions Gallery


Why does photography have a duty to ethically represent people from marginalised communities? 

How can photographs change stereotypical media narratives around class, and in particular working class identity? 

Is socially engaged photography the key to producing authentic and trustworthy visual representations of people and communities?

Join photographers Amara Eno, Ciara Leeming, Joanne Coates and filmmaker & curator Paul Sng for a lively and informative discussion inspired by our current exhibition Invisible Britain: This Separated Isle.

This Separated Isle explores how concepts of ‘Britishness’ reveal an inclusive range of opinions and understandings about our national character. Based on the book Invisible Britain: This Separated Isle, the exhibition presents a diverse range of engaging photographic portraits of people from across the UK. Each portrait is accompanied with a poignant first person testimony that draws attention to each person’s story, placing them centre stage so that we can begin to understand their lives.

Booking recommended via Art Tickets or call the gallery on 01274 737843.

Tickets are ‘pay what you can afford,’ suggested donation of £3 or £5.

Impressions Gallery is a charity and we fundraise for everything we do. Please consider donating to support our events programme. Free tickets are available for those who would otherwise be unable to attend.

Top image: Owen Haisley © Ciara Leeming

Seminar Programme

2.00pm – Welcome and introduction from Anne McNeill, Director, Impressions Gallery.

2.05pm – Provocation by Paul Sng, curator of This Separated Isle.

Presentations: Telling stories, amplifying voices, changing the narrative.

Chaired by Paul Sng.

2.15pm – Joanne Coates.

2.35pm – Amara Eno.

2.55pm – Ciara Leeming.

3.15pm – Questions.

3.30pm – Closing remarks.

3.30 to 5.00pm – Drinks reception.


  • POSTPONED – Invisible Britain: Photography & Representation — Impressions Gallery

    Paul Sng

    Paul Sng is a biracial British Chinese filmmaker and writer based in Edinburgh. His work is driven by methodical research, creative storytelling and a collaborative approach that strives for inclusivity and diversity in people and projects. In 2015, Paul founded Velvet Joy Productions to explore the lives and work of individuals who have been neglected, marginalised or misrepresented in the arts and media. Paul’s documentaries have been broadcast on national television and screened internationally and include Sleaford Mods – Invisible Britain (2015), Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle (2017), Social Housing, Social Cleansing (2018) and Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché (2021). (Image: © Alicia Bruce)

  • POSTPONED – Invisible Britain: Photography & Representation — Impressions Gallery

    Joanne Coates

    Joanne Coates is a working class photographer, based in rural North England. She is interested in rurality, hidden histories and class. Joanne’s practice is as much about process, participation and working with communities as it is the still image. Joanne is Director of Lens Think, an arts organisation with the aims of fighting for class equality and a more creative industries through participation and radical community arts. She is the awardee of the Jerwood / Photoworks Prize (2021), and winner of the Portrait of Britain: British Journal of Photography (2020). Coates’ work has featured in The Guardian, BBC, Financial Times, The Telegraph and The British Journal of Photography. Selected exhibitions include Daughters of the Soil, Vane Gallery, Gateshead and The Gymnasium Gallery, Berwick-upon-Tweed (2022) and The Unseen Beautiful, Crown Street Gallery, Darlington (2019). (Image © Piotr Sell)

  • POSTPONED – Invisible Britain: Photography & Representation — Impressions Gallery

    Amara Eno

    Amara Eno is a photographer from London, UK. Her work focuses predominantly within the areas of documentary, portraiture, and reportage. Amara's work aims to initiate important dialogue between audiences and to empower those who often feel marginalised by mainstream narratives. Most notably, Amara has been recognised for her long-term documentary work-in-progress, The 25 Percent, which explores the multi-faceted landscape of single-parenthood in the UK. A selection of her work is on show at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery until Sunday 25 September 2022 as part of the 'Counted | Scotland's Census 2022' exhibition. Selected clients and publications include The New York Times, GuardianLabs, The British Red Cross, The Financial Times, Monocle and Global Citizen.

  • POSTPONED – Invisible Britain: Photography & Representation — Impressions Gallery

    Ciara Leeming

    Ciara Leeming is a photographer, writer and former journalist based in Manchester. She spent four years collaborating with Roma families and members of the Traveller community to produce documentary work about their lives. This year she has worked with people from a Chester mental health centre and a Wigan homeless charity on socially engaged projects centred around the high street.