Phil Taylor - Biography & CV

Phil Taylor is an artist based in Brighton, UK, working primarily with video, photography and sound. Taylor has shown his work nationally and internationally since graduating from Oxford Brookes University in 1998.

In a recent body of work culminating in the exhibition 'Dia de los Muertos' (Day of the Dead) as part of Brighton Photo Biennial and Brighton Photo Fringe, Taylor has explored cultural and historical aspects of life in the North American state of Arizona through photography, video and drawing based on the novel 'Blood Meridian' by Cormac McCarthy. The exhibition title refers to a cultural phenomenon that occurs throughout Mexico and the Southwest states of North America – the celebration of the deceased. It is also celebrated with the Catholic holidays of All Saint's Day and All Souls' Day. The state of Arizona has a large Mexican population and the Day of the Dead phenomenon is tightly woven into the rich cultural life of the state. This recent body of work was created during a three-month period living in Arizona. The images in the work represent a personal visual interpretation of historical, social, political and cultural elements of the region. They form part of a journal of landscapes, people and the environment of towns and cities. The subjects depicted include the US/Mexican border, the high desert landscape, the Titan II ICBM Missile Silo, Native American Reservations, gun culture, the Barrio Viejo district in Tucson and the 'Dia de los Muertos' phenomenon.

'During his three-month stay in Tucson, Arizona, Phil Taylor focused his intentions and his camera on the region's environment, people, culture, and politics. From the arid Southwest landscape to the folk traditions of indigenous peoples, his images interpret a range of subjects that include desolate expanses and urban sprawl as well as issues surrounding the Second Amendment right to bear arms and Arizona's close proximity to Mexico. Taylor is a visitor yet he senses what might make a good picture as if he has been photographing here for years, infusing both the mundane and the magical with an almost dreamlike quality that draws the viewer in. His understanding and use of light is a pivotal tool he exploits and experiments with to both expose details and transform seemingly arbitrary scenes with otherworldly presence. Chance and randomness seem to be everywhere, yet the whole is unified by Taylor's vision and presentation of the work. Carefully considered selection, sequencing, and pairings of images create new visual contrasts and connections as narrative fragments are suggested, interrupted, and never fully realized, but deftly felt and experienced.' Cass Fey, Curator of Education, Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, Arizona, USA

Many of Taylor's time-based projects focus upon specific locations that have an historical event or significance associated with them, such as the Sachsenhausen concentration camp in Oranienburg, Germany and the former East German TV Tower in Berlin. These works interpret and document the locations whilst also presenting an emotive and personal viewpoint.

2013 ‘Brighton Illustration Show’ (drawings) University of Brighton Gallery, UK – group show
2013 ‘Urban Ghosts’ (photography) The King’s Head Gallery, Lewes, UK – solo show
2012 ‘6 x 6’ (book) University of Brighton Gallery, UK – group show
2012 ‘Dia de los Muertos’ (Day of the Dead) Brighton Photo Biennial / Brighton Photo Fringe – solo show
2012 ‘Or..the Evening Redness in the West, DPM Images Gallery, Brighton UK – solo show
2011 Sunsreet Photo Gallery, Tucson, Arizona, USA – solo show2011 Nunhead Open 8 - 'Poisonville' video installation, UK
2011 Latitude Festival - 'Poisonville' video installation, UK
2010 Soundwaves Festival video installation, International Experimental Music Festival, Brighton, UK
2010 White Night Cultural Festival '30 Seconds of Fortune', Brighton, UK
2010 Future Places, video, international festival of digital media and culture, Porto, Portugal
2010 Cine City - ‘Your Order Number is |05’, Brighton film & video festival, Brighton, UK
2010 World Views, photographs, Southeast Gallery of Photographic Art, Miami, USA
2010 Brighton Art Fair, 'La Marseillaise' video installation, Brighton, UK
2008 Art of Sounds, the 1st annual international festival of electroacoustic and polymedia art,
Guarnerius Art Center in Belgrade, Serbia.
2006 ‘Ocean Terminal Britannia’, video, Cafe Diverso Gallery, Barcelona, Spain
2005 ‘Your Order Number is |05’, photography & video, exhibition, IO Gallery, Brighton, UK

Curriculum Vitae (60kb PDF)

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