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Julian germain's CV

curriculum vitae

Julian Germain (London, 1962) became interested in photography at school. He went on to study it at Trent Polytechnic in Nottingham and the Royal College of Art in London. He has published several books, including In Soccer Wonderland (1994) and The Face of the Century (1999). His first book, Steel Works (1990), utilised a combination of his own photographs alongside historical images and pictures from various sources including family albums to examine the effects of the closure of Consett steelworks as well as broader issues of post industrialisation. Julian’s continued belief in the value of amateur and ‘functional’ images is also reflected in the book, For every minute you are angry you lose sixty seconds of happiness, first published by SteidlMack in 2005, and also in the Running Line project, a sculptural installation in Saltwell Park, Gateshead in 2007, of more than 139,000 pictures made by amateur and professional photographers of the previous year’s ‘Great North Run’.

Since 1995 he has been working with Brazilian artists, Patricia Azevedo and Murilo Godoy on a number of photography projects which are conceived and executed as collaborations with groups such as favela communities and street children, who produce the imagery themselves. In 1998, the book No Mundo Maravilhoso do Futebol was published by Basalt (the proceeds financing the construction of a library and community centre) and the No Olho da Rua collective has specialised in bringing imagery made by these marginalised groups directly to the public in the form of posters, newspapers and flyers displayed and distributed on the streets of the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte.

Germain sits on the editorial board of the magazine Useful Photography alongside Erik Kessels and Hans Aarsman and is a Trustee of the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. He has exhibited his work internationally, notably at the Photographer’s Gallery, London; Parco Gallery, Tokyo; MASP, Sao Paulo; Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. Classroom Portraits, 2004 - 2012, Germain’s extensive global survey about education and childhood in different cultures was exhibited at the Netherlands Fotomuseum and published by Prestel.

In 2014, Germain set up the Ashington District Star, a free local newspaper for the Northumbrian ex-mining town, run with local people who wish to creatively explore their everyday surroundings. Amongst other projects, Julian is currently (as part of the No Olho da Rua collective), planning to publish and exhibit material produced by Brazilian street children over the last 20 years and developing a major portrait project featuring 4 and 5 generation families with the Institute of Genetic Medicine at Newcastle University. He lives and works in Northumberland, UK.