This is the first postgraduate course of its kind in the region, and one of only two or three nationally, and its introduction is long over due according to Nathan Tromans, Course Director: “Given that Birmingham is developing as an important centre for photography nationally and internationally, it makes sense for BIAD to expand it’s reputation for photography at undergraduate level in to a specialised postgraduate programme that reflects the exciting and challenging developments of the medium.” Over the last few years on the BA programme two photographic trends have emerged- fashion/ advertising, and documentary. Although documentary covers a broad spectrum of contemporary practice it also demonstrates a clear focus and context.
Photography course - Social documentary photography
This is an exciting time to get involved in documentary practice as Nathan Tromans explains: “Documentary is now considered to be one of the more useful terms in bringing together and inspiring great diversity of practice and is at the centre of many debates around the medium. Through sustained application and a focus on a specific area, students will be encouraged to develop an investigative nature and to challenge, inform and explore the intrinsic qualities of the medium.
The West Midlands is an ideal location to develop such a programme. The central library holds one of the UK’s most important collections of social documentary photography, there are numerous spaces which exhibit documentary photography and Rhubarb Rhubarb, which is based in Birmingham, has a growing international reputation as an important event in the global photographic calendar attracting key figures in photography from around the world.