Exhibition at Scottish Parliament | Higher Vision

Frozen flower in ice cube

Jazmin Myles

The Scottish Society for the History of Photography, SQA and Scottish Parliament present a new exhibition exploring Scotland through the lens of photography students.

Artwork from some of Scotland’s most talented amateur photographers is to go on display later this month as part of a new exhibition at the Scottish Parliament.

The exhibition, Higher Vision, will showcase some of the best images taken by 26 students from schools and colleges from all over the country who have completed the Scottish Qualifications Authority’s Higher Photography course over the past year. The exhibition will be on display to the public from Tuesday 21 November 2018 to Friday 8 February 2019 and entry is free.

Trap door opeing into an abandoned interior

‘The aim of this project was to expose a hidden beauty in forgotten buildings and document them in an attempt to highlight their haunting elegance’. Benedict Ray

The exhibition provides a unique insight into what life in Scotland is like through the lens of these students and captures people and places from their own outlook. From Scotland’s diverse landscapes and our environment to portraiture of people who have made an impact on their lives. These images also explore issues of identity, adolescence and mental health. 

Rusting clock, exposed to the elements with over hanging foliage

‘There is beauty to be found in abandoned sites, and photography allows it to be appreciated’. Andy Desceras

Held in partnership with SQA, and the Scottish Society for the History of Photography, the exhibition captures a selection of the talent that has been displayed by over 2,300 Higher Photography candidates over the past academic year.  Taken from students’ projects produced as part of their course assessments, which counted towards their final grades, a panel consisting of photography and industry experts chose the images that will be featured.

‘This is a really impressive exhibition which tells a moving story about what life in Scotland is like from the viewpoint of these students. Photography is such a powerful medium and I am delighted that the Parliament can showcase the talent of these amateur photographers by putting their work on public display.’

The Presiding Officer, the Rt. Hon. Ken Macintosh MSP

Close up image of a fern plant emphasizing the form of the leaves.

‘They are special images that I will look back on which inspires me to learn and adapt more.’ Euan Garden

The images in the exhibition were produced as part of each candidate’s course assessments and counted towards their final grades. SQA selected 80 of the strongest candidates, with ten from each of the eight parliamentary regions of Scotland. It was then whittled down to the 26 students whose work will now be on display.

‘Higher Photography is a demanding qualification, and it asks a lot of the learners who undertake the course. Candidates are expected to plan, develop and produce creative and technically proficient photographs, and develop skills that are valuable for learning, life and work. The images produced by the twenty six candidates who were selected for the exhibition are simply stunning. The Higher Photography course allows candidates the chance to broaden their skills and creative talents, and to widen their horizons about opportunities for employment within the creative industries.’

Dr Janet Brown, SQA Chief Executive

A portrait of a young person standing, arms aloft with an explosion of colour projected onto them.

‘Although I have seen this technique used before, I wanted to challenge myself with creating my own version of portrait photographs, whilst thinking a bit outside of the box’. Gillian Love

“A generation of young people are getting a wonderful introduction to the world of photography, especially Scotland’s important role in its evolution. The Higher Vision exhibition is an impressive demonstration of photographic talent from across Scotland. We look forward to featuring the work in our journal Studies in Photography, which offers insights into the historic as well as the new contemporary voices that are shaping the direction of photography in Scotland.”

Alexander Hamilton, Chair of Scottish Society for the History of Photography

In the 2018 Year of Young People, this exciting collection of images demonstrates the imagination, skill and resourcefulness of students from across Scotland. SSHoP has invited Aayushi Gupta – a young artist and student of photography – to contribute a feature on Higher Vision to the next issue of Studies in Photography. The journal will also contain an example of a candidate’s work from each parliamentary region.

‘This exhibition is a wonderful showcase of emerging talent from across Scotland. Triodos Bank is delighted to be involved with this initiative and recognises the passion and courage of all the students, who’s  work will inspire the many visitors to the Parliament over the coming months.’

Graeme Galloway, of Triodos Bank

Higher Vision is supported by Triodos Bank, A&M Imaging, Scottish Council on Archives and National Galleries of Scotland.

Location: Scottish Parliment, Edinburgh, EH99 1SP

Dates: Tuesday 21 November 2018 to Friday 8 February 2019

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