Contemporary Art Society acquires Michelle Sank photographs for RAMM’s collection
11 September 2020
The Contemporary Art Society’s Rapid Response Fund has acquired a series of eight photographs, entitled Breathe, by Michelle Sank for the Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery’s collection. The photographs were taken in March and April 2020 whilst the artist was isolated from her partner and social group during lockdown. Michelle Sank is an internationally acclaimed social documentary photographer based in Topsham, Exeter. The photographs will be displayed as part of RAMM’s exhibition Funded with Thanks, opening in 2021.
Michelle Sank said: “I have been documenting – first with social isolation and then with lockdown – how people have managed private and public spaces during Covid on my daily walks in a neighbouring area “Burnthouse Lane” where I live in Exeter, Devon. This is an area that has a strong sense of community. I have been drawn to how people of all ages have negotiated this new way of being and how their interaction with these spaces has unfolded.”
Cllr Rachel Sutton, Deputy Leader & Portfolio Holder for Climate & Culture, Exeter City Council, said: “The Covid-19 lockdown of 2020 has had a profound impact on the city and people of Exeter and we wanted RAMM’s collections to reflect this remarkable time. Michelle Sank’s evocative images capture those weeks of empty streets, tranquillity and social isolation. They also illustrate the community spirit and human resilience that allowed people to survive such extraordinary circumstances. Acquiring the photographs and displaying them at RAMM will help us to reach out to new audiences and tell their personal stories of Exeter’s lockdown.”