Crawford ARt Gallery logo

Exhibitions Archive


BURKE + NORFOLK photographs from the war in Afghanistan by John Burke & Simon Norfolk

April 20 - June 30, 2012

ARTIST TALK: Simon Norfolk will discuss the exhibition and his practice on Thursday 19 April at 5:30 pm.

Crawford Art Gallery is delighted to present Burke + Norfolk: photographs from the war in Afghanistan by John Burke and Simon Norfolk, who is shortlisted for the internationally acclaimed 2012 Sony World Photography Award.

In October 2010, Simon Norfolk began a series of new photographs in Afghanistan, which takes its cue from the work of nineteenth-century Irish photographer John Burke (c. 1843-1900).   Burke was the first photographer to make pictures in Afghanistan. He accompanied British forces during the invasion that became the Second Anglo-Afghan War from 1878-1880, producing albums of prints for sale.  Virtually unknown today, Burke was a precursor of the contemporary photo-journalist producing work that went beyond reportage. His images do not reinforce British colonial values, but allow for a critical and nuanced reading of the relationship between the British forces and their Afghan peers. 

Simon Norfolk (b. 1963) is a landscape photographer whose work over the last ten years has been themed around a probing and stretching of the meaning of the word ‘battlefield’ in all its forms. Norfolk’s photographs re-imagine or respond to Burke’s Afghan war scenes in the context of the contemporary conflict. Conceived as a collaborative project with Burke across time, this body of work by Simon Norfolk is presented alongside John Burke’s images. Rather than artificially restaging Burke’s compositions exactly, Norfolk identified contemporary equivalents, researching and travelling to Burke’s vantage points and developing a digital equivalent of his collodion wet plate technique. Norfolk finds many of the original locations of Burke’s work and conveys modern parallels with their subject matter depicting soldiers, bomb-sites, tented communities, alongside images of contemporary culture such as internet cafés and radar stations.

The exhibition is accompanied by a short film by Simon Norfolk discussing his relationships with John Burke and contemporary Afghanistan.

Burke + Norfolk originated at Tate Modern, London (2011).

Simon Norfolk has exhibited internationally including Exposed, Voyuerism, Surveillance and the Camera, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and Walker Art Museum, Minneapolis (2011), Burke + Norfolk, Tate Modern, London (2011). In recent years he has shown at the Shanghai Art Museum, Russian Academy of Fine Arts, Moscow, the Imperial War Museum and has received many awards for his work including being shortlisted for the prestigious 2012 Sony World Photography Award, The European Publishers Award for Photography; The Olivier Rebbot Award (Foreign Press Club of America) and The Infinity Award (ICP, New York). His work is in major public and private collections throughout the world. 

Simon Norfolk - Masterclass

June 28 - July 1, 2012. For further information click here

Emmett Place, Cork, Ireland
T12 TNE6
Tel: 021 480 5042

Opening Hours
N.B. Last entry is 15 minutes before closing

Monday–Saturday 10.00am–5.00pm*
Thursday until 8.00pm

Sundays and Bank Holidays
11.00 am4.00pm

*Second floor closes 15 minutes before closing
TripAdvisor LogoPure Cork LogoIreland's Ancient East logoCork Digital Mareting Awards Winner 2021Cork Business Association LogoCovid Charter logo
Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sports and Media logo

© 2023

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram Skip to content