To mark twenty-five years since the opening of his gallery in Kinsale, Giles Norman has just launched a book presenting over 150 of his most enduring images.
A chance request to photograph a school project provided renowned photographer Giles Norman with his first opportunity to use a camera and, by 1981, he was creating his first portfolios. He developed a distinctive style, of black-and-white to deliver the essence of his subjects while travelling Ireland in search of images. This remarkable collection of images, from rugged headlands and windswept oceans to fragile flora and shadowed skies, capture the timeless splendour of Ireland.
Since the gallery opened in historic Kinsale, thousands of visitors have witnessed Gilesâ€™ special talent. Giles may have inherited his talent from his mothersâ€™s family as her great-uncle was the Belgian painter, Henri de Braekeleer, one of Van Goghâ€™s great influences, whose paintings still hang in the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Brussels.
Gilesâ€™ images of the Irish landscape that evoke a purity of vision, mostly stripped of manmade intrusion. Wider views of wild, remote places intermingle with small details of windows and moments in urban and rural life with little concession to the human form. Preferring to keep his pictures â€˜realâ€™, he shuns the special effects of modern photography. Skeletons of fishing boats, lonely roads, deserted ruins and cobbled streets speak of a life apart from the image, and of our temporary passage. A shaft of light between clouds, a breaking wave, the elegance of a single flower remind us how special these moments are. The emphasis Giles places on the art rather than the science of photography makes his photographs more engaging and memorable. Accompanied by his own observations and insights on his work, Ireland â€“ Timeless Images by Giles Norman is a must for anyone who shares Gilesâ€™ passion for photography and the Irish landscape.
Ireland â€“ Timeless Images by Giles Norman is published by The Collins Press, price â‚¬24.99. It is available in all good bookshops and online from www.collinspress.ie