Leeds: talk with Les Monaghan and Lily Miles, 19th March ’20

This March we have northern photographers Les Monaghan and Lily Miles talking about their socially engaged photography work and the processes they go through in making it.


Thursday 19th March, 2020. Doors at 6pm, kicks off at 7pm 

The Brunswick, Leeds

Free Entry


Les Monaghan

‘I am interested in class, community, and representation. I make difficult photographs with people I represent often after long term engagement, listening and reflecting. Previously a press photographer schooled in unambiguous imagery, I have deconstructed the documentary method through successive projects; staging photographs with migrants in assimilation (2006 – 2008) and A Dream of Doncaster (2016), working with text and portraits on Aspirations Doncaster (2014) and The Desire Project (2015 – 2016); fictionalising documentary with A Series of Dislocating Events (2011 – 2014); and collaboration with Relative Poverty (2016 – 2019). Works are often shown on a large scale engaging directly with the public.’

Seen and not heard collects together examples from five recent visual projects by Les Monaghan that allow us to hear the voices of each of those portrayed.

Hearing the individual voices in each of these projects reminds us how little we hear these same voices in our national conversation, orchestrated as it is by vested interests. These representatives of our children, refugees, destitute and homeless would seem to be whom Karl Marx was speaking of when he said ‘They cannot represent themselves; they must be represented.’ Yet, look closer and you see (and hear) everyday people, you and I, all of us, the majority who live in this world. Who, then, represents us in 2020? Do we have our own voice? Are we heard?

Seen and not heard will run from 13 March to 6 April at Chapel FM Arts Centre in Seacroft, Leeds as part of the Writing on Air festival.




Lily Miles

Lily Miles is a photographer currently based in Northern England. Her work specialises in documentary story telling, with a primary focus on exploring the visual depiction of societal taboos. Lily aims to put herself at the heart of these stories targeting her practice to genuinely represent the people photographed. Equal weight is given to both the story told, and how Lily configures its visual expression. Her most recent and on-going series ‘Pink to Make the Boys Wink’ is a documentation of a local Sheffield brothel, ran by women. The project emerged from a desire to understand the choice of work that supports these working women. Miles graduated in Photography at Bath Spa University in 2019 and has since gone on to win Fotonow’s South West Graduate Photography Prize which begins with a residency in Plymouth starting this year.

lily 004Lily_Miles_04Lily_Miles_02





Thursday 19th March, 2020. Doors at 6pm, kicks off at 7pm 

The Brunswick, Leeds

Free Entry


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