USA. Iowa. 2017. Jenna, a farm girl. © Bruce Gilden Magnum Photos USA. Iowa. 2017. Nathen, a farm boy. © Bruce Gilden Magnum Photos USA. Iowa. 2017. Trinity, a farm girl. © Bruce Gilden Magnum Photos USA. Milwaukee. Wisconsin. 2017. Caleb, a farm boy. © Bruce Gilden Magnum Photos

Leica Camera as an official partner of Photo London 2018

As a camera and optics brand, Leica has been deeply involved in not only the production but the culture of photography since its inception. The brand’s passion for this art form is still something that it heavily involves itself in today. For Leica, photography has always been at the forefront of its thoughts and actions; Leica is photography. It is then befitting that for the third year running, Leica Camera will be the Official Partner of Photo London and is proud to host the Leica Collector’s Lounge.

This year will see a record number of exhibitors including 100 of the world’s leading galleries at the world-class photography fair which will showcase the very best of the past, present and future of photography to its international audience. Guests can attend from 17th – 20th May (press preview: 16th May) at Somerset House to experience new work by established masters and rare vintage pieces alongside work from emerging artists as well. Leica Camera will join these highly anticipated collections of work with their own exclusive exhibition: Farm Boys and Farm Girls USA by Magnum Photographer Bruce Gilden.

This year, Leica will be hosting its own lounge, the Leica Collector’s Lounge, which will be located in The Terrace Pavilion of Somerset House. Guests are invited to join the brand to experience Bruce Gilden’s exhibition, attend book signings, and discover more about Leica’s product range and history as the most iconic photography brand.

Given the title of his new series, it’s interesting to note that Bruce Gilden is a self-professed “city boy” who has spent most of his career working in urban environments and who perhaps couldn’t be further removed from the ways of life of the agricultural community in Middle America. However, in 2014, as he was photographing at crowded state fairs, he came upon young people showcasing and selling their livestock and was instantly intrigued. It revealed an unfamiliar and fascinating world that took him “outside his comfort zone”.

This series is the first time in his life that Gilden’s photography focuses mainly on adolescents but perhaps this has something to do with the fact that he said he found them “more mature than their years”. Growing up with farm animals and being so close to life and death on a daily basis, he thinks “prepares you for your own.” In 2017, Gilden decided to continue his work on the farm kids. He followed them at state fairs and livestock exhibitions where they fiercely compete, and at educational conventions where they learn how to become successful members of the agricultural community. 

Bruce Gilden’s body of work, ‘Farm Boys and Farm Girls USA’, which was shot entirely on a Leica S System, will be exhibited for the very first time at the Leica Collector’s Lounge at Photo London 2018. Gilden will also be giving a talk in the Fair’s main auditorium on the 18th May from 7pm and will be hosting book signings at 4pm on 17th and 19th May.

You can find more information about the Photo London Fair and the whole programme here.