Smartphone photography captures underground culture

‘Reveal the Real You’ campaign from Huawei and Dazed. Credit: Cristian Angeloni.

What do a contemporary performer from Shoreditch, a jazz musician from South London and a break dancer from Birmingham have in common? The answer is in everyone’s pocket: a smartphone.

A series of pictures taken by smartphones are being exhibited in the heart of Shoreditch, focused on the theme of London’s underground culture.

Hackney is playing host to a pop-up photography exhibition, Reveal The Real, organised by smartphone company Huawei and arts magazine Dazed.

Twenty people from across the country were shortlisted for the exhibition, which was judged by experts from the Arts Impact Fund.

The winners whose works were selected for the exhibition were a professional dancer from Shoreditch, Kat Collings, a jazz musician from South London, Savannah Amaka and Birmingham break-dancer Anthony Shintai Amao. They each received the top prize of £10,000.

‘Reveal the Real You’ campaign from Huawei and Dazed. Credit: Cristian Angeloni.

Kat who pursues photography as her hobby said: : “It was so eye opening for me because a smartphone is something so accessible. It has the same features of a camera and it challenges your eye for photography in the same way. And for me it has been great to approach photography in such a different way.”

The photographs are hung on a concrete floor and nude brick walls and framed three representations of  underground culture, in their rawness and realism.

Talking about Huawei’s aims for hosting the exhibition Andrew Garrihy, CMO for Huawei Europe said:  “Technology empowers people to achieve and do more, challenging some of today’s most up-and-coming photographers to celebrate the communities and causes they care most about.”

‘Reveal the Real You’ campaign from Huawei and Dazed. Credit: Cristian Angeloni.

While the crowds were busy familiarising themselves with the photographs on display, the subjects of the pictures made an appearance at the exhibition.

The three photographers’ art took life in front an assembled mass of onlookers. The three acts showcased what was captured on camera in an unexpected live performance. From freestyle break dancers, through an impromptu jazz session, to a contemporary portrayal of gleeful youth, the 28 photos were not just a static narrative for visitors to see and walk by. They told the stories of young people who do not conform, nor play by the rules.

Reveal The Real, will remain open until 11 March, and is being held at Newspeak House, 133 – 135 Bethnal Green Road, E2 7DG.