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King's Lynn artist mounts photographic exhibition

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Born and raised in King's Lynn, photographic artist, Fiona Bennett is returning to her home county to bring an exhibition of her imaginative work to the prestigious Handa Gallery in Wells Maltings.

Inspired and influenced by the photographic works of Helene Binet, Emily Allchurch and Berenice Abbott, Bennett remains unique with her own distinctive style.

She has exhibited at the Royal Academy and as far afield as Italy.

Sense of Place by Fiona Bennett. (56632891)
Sense of Place by Fiona Bennett. (56632891)

Not just a photographer, she is a sculptor of photographic images, a painter whose brush is her camera.

Her unique creation of architectural collages and chimeric constructions produce a fiction that appears real until examined more closely.

Sense of Place, Bennett’s most recent work, headlines her latest exhibition inspired by a trip to Wells-Next-The-Sea, and incorporates several elements that highlight the town’s heritage, its history and buildings.

I Do Like To Do Be Beside The Sea by Fiona Bennett. (56632896)
I Do Like To Do Be Beside The Sea by Fiona Bennett. (56632896)

She said: "Wells is a fantastic, bustling town and it was a pleasure to get to know the place and its people."

The exhibition will feature architectural collages from Bennett’s work commissioned for the Gibberd Gallery in Harlow, and from Southend, the setting for her largest work, I do like to be beside the seaside.

Conceived as a roll of wallpaper and designed to be pasted onto a long wall, this serves as an impressive feature and worthwhile investment for a business wanting its interiors to stand out from the norm, whilst supporting an emerging artist like Fiona Bennett.

Butterfly by Fiona Bennett. (56632899)
Butterfly by Fiona Bennett. (56632899)

Not all her work is on such a large scale. There are many small works in her Shadow Series, created when travel restrictions imposed by lockdown rules limited Bennett’s work to her local neighbourhood.

Turning her camera to her immediate surroundings, she focussed on the accidental art we often miss, those we pass by without a second’s thought.

Her work in this series brings to light the shadows cast by buildings and street fixtures as the sun’s position changes course.

Bennett asks us to pause and contemplate the interplay of light and darkness; to realise that light produces more beauty by its partial absence.

Some images are simple, giving us the opportunity to consider the importance of angles from different perspectives; others, such as Butterfly are more complex, reconstructed shadows suggesting other worldly origins.

Bennett is fascinated by the architecture in our towns and cities and, through her work, helps us rediscover the places we love and hate, and those we pass by, unaware of the beauty that surrounds us.

The Sense of Place Exhibition will be at the Handa Gallery, Wells Maltings until May 22 from 11am until 4pm daily, featuring original, innovative and accessible art with some reproduced as limited-edition tee shirts.

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