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Opening event for SoulsINQUEST

28 May 2024

We were proud to host the opening of SoulsINQUEST at Platform earlier this month, a new photography exhibition instigated and commissioned by the charity INQUEST, working with photographer Sarah Booker and 18 families.

The opening was a welcome opportunity to hear from INQUEST and meet a number of the families featured in the exhibition who offered further insight into the support received from INQUEST and the opportunity the exhibition brings.

SoulsINQUEST uses photography, text and archive as a lens onto state violence, death, grief and resistance. The exhibition is an embodiment of family resistance that refuses to be silenced, misrepresented or forgotten.

Sarah Booker, SoulsINQUEST photographer who collaborated with the families, said: “Through photography and text, seventeen families have wrestled with symbols. Symbols which honour their loved ones, killed by institutions that failed to protect them. Symbols which are conduits and connectors between those who have passed and those who loved them dearly.  Collectively, 18 families from different backgrounds have engaged in workshops, endless Zoom calls, WhatsApps and face to face discussions. They have worked together to create their way through unimaginable pain and to confront the truths that the authorities need to keep buried.”

Linda Allan, family campaigner and mother of late daughter Katie who' s story is featured in the exhibition, spoke at the event with some powerful words: “SoulsINQUEST is a novel and unique blend of the loved ones we’ve lost and the steely determination of some of the strongest families I have ever met, portrayed in some very special images. This exhibition is about the strength of individuals who are ‘bearing the unbearable’.

Deborah Coles, Director of INQUEST, said: “Too often families bereaved by deaths in state custody and care face lifelong struggles against indifference, denial and impunity. Never have these issues come under such scrutiny in Scotland as at present. SoulsINQUEST is a creative response which takes a different perspective."It is a form of art as activism and resistance. It is also a celebration of the power of bereaved people in the face of injustice. Love and grief are at the centre. Scotland has a long tradition of activism and the arts, and it is therefore fitting to have this exhibition here. The exhibition poses a challenge to all those who view it: to be moved as they bear witness to each story, and to be inspired to stand with these families in their (our) continued struggles for truth, justice, accountability and societal change.”

A series of associated events - film screening, Q&A, guided tour & creative workshop - will take place in June, to offer the opportunity to further explore themes raised in the exhibition. As well as taking in the exhibition, there is a range of merchandise for sale including Black Lodge Press T-shirts, tops, tote bags, books and pins. All profits directly fund INQUEST’s work with families bereaved by state related deaths.

Part of Glasgow International Open Programme 2024.

Open at Platform Monday to Saturdays, 10am - 5pm, until 29 June, 2024. Free admission.

Read more about the exhibition and events series here.

 

Visual Arts
Platform

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