The first Photoworks Festival – Propositions for Alternative Narratives – takes place from 24 September to 25 October 2020, with 11 international artists coming together to exhibit work for audiences to engage with in real life and online.

Photoworks Festival is the reshaping of one of the UK’s longest running photography festivals – Brighton Photo Biennial – and asks what a photography festival can be and who they are for. The 2020 edition can be experienced by audiences in three ways; via a printed ‘festival in a box’, through a major presentation of outdoor exhibitions on billboards spanning Brighton & Hove, Worthing, and the University of Sussex campus and in an online series of events.

Photoworks will be presenting selected works in the windows of town centre shops in Worthing through a collaboration between the festival, Worthing Borough Council and New River Retail co-ordinated by Colonnade House, Worthing’s creative hub. This is an exciting development in the council’s plans for more public art in the town, and helps to support the visitor economy after COVID-19. 

A map is available here  the posters will have QR codes, so audiences can learn more about the artists as they come across the works. Digital tours will also be available on Photoworks’ website. 

The outdoor festival has been made possible thanks to a collaboration with Ground Up Media and Jack.

The outdoor exhibitions can be found at Units 1/2, Montague Centre and 85/91 Montague Street;


Alberta Whittle: Business as Usual, 2017 – C.R.E.A.M.

Units 1/2, Montague Centre, Worthing BN11 1YJ

Business As Usual borrows its name from the term used in the corporate world to refer to an unchanging state of affairs despite difficulties or disturbances. Alberta Whittle uses humour and sarcasm to create ambivalent layers of meaning, addressing themes including disempowered histories, climate colonialism, trauma, healing and discomfort with how privilege is performed and engaged with.

Alberta Whittle (Barbados/UK, b. 1980) is an artist, researcher and curator. She is a Research Associate at The University of Johannesburg. She was a RAW Academie Fellow at RAW Material in Dakar in 2018 and is the Margaret Tait Award winner for 2018/9. Alberta has been a Board Member for the Scottish Contemporary Arts Network (SCAN) since 2017.

Her creative practice is motivated by the desire to manifest self-compassion and collective care as key methods in battling anti-blackness. She choreographs interactive installations, using film, sculpture and performance as site-specific artworks in public and private spaces.

Alberta has exhibited and performed in various solo and group shows, including at Grand Union (2020), Eastside Projects (2020), DCA (2019), GoMA, Glasgow (2019), Pig Rock Bothy at the National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh (2019), 13th Havana Biennale, Cuba (2019), The Tyburn Gallery, London (2019), The City Arts Centre, Edinburgh (2019), The Showroom, London (2018), National Art Gallery of the Bahamas (2018), RAW Material, Dakar (2018), FADA Gallery, Johannesburg (2018), the Apartheid Museum, Johannesburg (2017), FRAMER FRAMED, Amsterdam (2015), Goethe On Main, Johannesburg (2015), at the Johannesburg Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale, Venice (2015), and BOZAR, Brussels (2014), amongst others. Her work is part of The Scottish National Gallery Collections, Glasgow Museums Collections and The Contemporary Art Research Collection at Edinburgh College of Art.

Over 2021, Alberta will be sharing new work as part of Art Night, Liverpool Biennial, Empire Remains at Grand Union, business as usual : hostile environment at Glasgow Sculpture Studios and Right of Admission at the University of Johannesburg.

Voice recording available here.


Pixy Lao: Experimental Relationship, 2007

Units 1/2, Montague Centre, Worthing BN11 1YJ

Pixy Liao’s ongoing project Experimental Relationship began as an exploration of her relationship with her younger partner, Moro. After starting to date Moro, who is five years her junior, Liao felt the urge to explore this gendered inversion of the typical relationship age gap and to question stereotypes and traditions. In the images of the couple together, Liao portrays herself in a dominant role, standing over Moro, or remaining clothed when he is undressed.

Pixy Liao, (Shanghai, China b. 1979) is an artist who currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.  Liao’s long-term project Experimental Relationship challenges conventional notions of gender dynamics and socially accepted norms.

She is a recipient of NYFA Fellowship in photography, Santo Foundation Individual Artist Awards, Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival Madame Figaro Women Photographers Award, En Foco’s New Works Fellowship and LensCulture Exposure Awards, etc. She has done artist residencies at Light Work, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Center for Photography at Woodstock, University of Arts London, School of Visual Arts,  Pioneer Works, and Camera Club of New York. Liao has participated in exhibitions and performances internationally, including the Rencontres d’Arles in Arles (France); Asia Society (Houston); National Gallery of Australia (Sydney); Chambers Fine Art Gallery (New York & Beijing); Blindspot Gallery (Hong Kong); Stieglitz 19 Gallery (Belgium); Open Eye Gallery (Liverpool); the Museum of Sex (New York); UCCA Center for Contemporary Art (Beijing); and He Xiangning Art Museum (China). Liao holds an MFA in photography from the University of Memphis.

Voice recording available here.

Roger Eberhard: Human Territoriality, 2016-2019

Units 1/2, Montague Centre, Worthing BN11 1YJ

In Human Territoriality, Roger Eberhard depicts sites of former national or imperial borders that have shifted or ceased to exist. The series interrogates over 2000 years of human history and highlights the absurdity of nationalism and protectionism: despite – or perhaps because of – millennia of bloodshed, no border has ever stood unaltered, a cartographical oddity further emphasised by the captions Eberhard writes to accompany his images.

Roger Eberhard (Zurich, Switzerland, b. 1984), is both an artist and a publisher. His photographic works deal with political and sociological implications of a world that has transformed from an industrialised to an optimising society. The range of Roger Eberhard’s topics is wide – his series Aussicht deals with the reprocessing of a former Nazi concentration camp in Ukraine and the memory that is stored within the walls of what is today a luxurious hotel. While the project Norma describes the absurdity of a Potemkin village in Hamburg, Eberhard’s Shanty Town Deluxe focuses on the marketing potential of poverty. For that project he traveled to South Africa to photograph a fancy hotel that offers its visitors a township experience without ever having to set eyes on people who are actually suffering. His series Standard raises questions about a world that becomes more anonymous through the increased standardisation, about a society in which the known replaces the community and where only the recognisability offers a sense of security. During one year Roger Eberhard travelled to 32 cities on all continents to photograph the standard room of a Hilton hotel and the view from the room. His most recent project, Human Territoriality, shows sites of past borders. Across the globe and crisscross through the history of spatialized politics, this body of work strings together photographs of former demarcation lines. Works by Roger Eberhard are exhibited internationally and found in important collections, both public and private. In 2011 he founded the Zurich based publishing company b.frank books, which publishes 4 to 6 artist’s books per year. Currently Roger Eberhard lives and works in Stallikon (CH) and in Berlin.

 Roger Eberhard studied at Hochschule der Künste in Zurich and at Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, USA. Eberhard’s photographs can be found in public and private collections, including Fotomuseum Winterthur, and have been shown at C/O in Berlin, the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Seoul and at the Swiss National Library in Bern.

Voice recording available here.

徐冠宇 Guanyu Xu: Temporarily Censored Home, 2018-2019

85/91 Montague St, Worthing BN11 3BN

徐冠宇 Guanyu Xu’s work interrogates his experiences of being born into a conservative Chinese family and of living as a gay man in the USA. Xu selected two images for Photoworks Festival that reflect his personal journey Opened Closets, from the series Temporarily Censored Home, is a multilayered photographic installation, in which Xu travelled from the USA to Beijing and installed his photographic work inside his childhood home as a temporary display.

Xu is an artist currently based in Chicago. He was the recipient of the Fred Endsley Memorial Fellowship (2015) and the James Weinstein Memorial Fellowship (2018). He is the winner of the PHOTOFAIRS Shanghai Exposure Award (2020), Lenscratch Student Prize (2019), the Foam Talent Award (2019), Lensculture Emerging Talent Award (2019), Kodak Film Photo Award (2019), and he is a Runner-up of the Aperture Foundation Portfolio Prize (2019).

His works have been exhibited and screened internationally including the Aperture Foundation, New York; ICP Museuand; Mint Museum, Charlotte; 36th Kasseler Dokfest, Germany, and others. His work can be found in public collections including The Art Institute of Chicago and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. His works have been featured in numerous publications including The New York Times, ArtAsiaPacific, The New Yorker, W Magazine, Aint-Bad Magazine, Harper’s Magazine, Musée Magazine, Der Greif, and China Photographic Publishing House.m, New York; Athens Photo Festival, Greece; Format Photo Festival, UK; Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland.

Voice recording available here.

About Photoworks

Photoworks champions photography for everyone. We’ve provided opportunities for artists and audiences since 1995. We are an international platform. Global in reach, we don’t have a venue, but our online channels are always open. Our programmes, both physical and digital, bring new experiences to audiences and open up new ways to encounter photography. Photoworks is a registered charity and an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation with a national remit. @photoworks_uk

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