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Capture Manchester exhibition preview at CUBE gallery

The preview of the Capture Manchester photo exhibition took place at Cube gallery on Portland St on 27 March 2009. Over 600 prints submitted by Manchester-based photographers and artists were on display. So did the exhibition truly Capture Manchester?

The Preview of the Capture Manchester exhibition was held at CUBE (Centre for Understanding of the Built Environment on Portland St Manchester on the evening of Friday 27 March 2009. The exhibition displays over 600 photographs submitted for the Capture Manchester competition.

Capture Manchester images on display at CUBE gallery

The competition entries were on show in the basement while upstairs, near the entrance were stunning black and white prints by John Davies one of the leading UK photographers of landscapes and cityscapes.

People were invited to submit photographs or illustrations which they felt accurately represented the unique character of Manchester. Nine images have been selected by a panel of judges, including musician and music journalist John Robb, radio presenter Allan Beswick and photographer John Davies.

All 600-odd entries were displayed. There is no curatorial element, apart from people choosing their own image. Each entrant was only allowed to submit one picture.

Capture Manchester images on display at CUBE gallery

A commemorative book containing all the images is also set to appear.

The prize giving ceremony took place at 7.30pm as part of the preview event.

So do the images really Capture Manchester and are they worthy of being put on display Manchester's foremost galleries?

The answer is 'Yes' and 'Yes'. The images are truly inspiring. They capture Manchester from all kinds of angles, both obvious and obscure. As well as cityscapes and architectural shots of familiar landmarks, there are photos of graffiti, found objects and lots more. A scattering of drawings and collages add an extra dimension to the photographs.

The 9 prize-winning images, blown up to large size and framed, were certainly very good, but I picked out quite a few of the post card size photos that I wouldn't mind seeing larger as well.

Redeye director Paul Herrman told me the photos are displayed in the order in which they were received, sorted into portrait and landscape rows.

Capture Manchester images on display at CUBE gallery

A tenth photo will be voted for by the public. I found it difficult to choose one or but in the end I plumped for the night time view from Werneth Low with silhouetted figure.

Capture Manchester is a fantastic project as it has involved people in Manchester at a grass roots level. It has achieved a high profile in local media, and no doubt the book will also sell many copies. I understand there will be more Capture Manchester competitions in the future.

Capture Manchester has been sponsored by DLA piper, organised by Red Eye Photography Network in association with Marketing Manchester.

Written by Aidan O'Rourke
Posted/Updated 2009-03-27

Aidan O'RourkeAidan O'Rourke has been active in photography and online media since 1995. He has documented the development of the local area in his Eyewitness website (1997-2005) and as a contributor to books, publications and the Manchester Evening News. He runs his Eyewitness photography walks in Manchester, Liverpool and other locations. He offers one-to-one tuition in Photography and Languages. He is a high-level speaker of German and can offer photography walks and tours through the medium of German. Visit www.aidan.co.uk

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