John Brooks

Born in the UK he was educated in Bath and majored in Art and Art history and History of Building.

At college he studied graphics and used photography to create designs commercially and for pleasure. His darkroom work embraced most film types including Litho work and solarisation, working in 35mm, half-plate, 5 x 4, and other media. His early graphic work won him several prizes including one from Oxford University’s Queen’s College.

With an educational background in the history of building, architecture and engineering it is no wonder that his work often consisted of studies of these forms. A study tour of European architecture honed his ability to observe and analyse structure and form. This enabled him to create works that explored the subject matter in new ways. These works led to one of his first exhibitions in the prestigious Arnolfini gallery in his early years of photography.

Since then he has expanded his repertoire to include more abstract and thematic compositions including illustrative work for particular publications.

His landscape work has been assisted by travel to interesting lands including India, China, Cuba, North Africa, Canada, USA, Russia, Inner and Outer Mongolia, Belarus, Poland, India, Sri Lanka and many European countries.

He has had numerous exhibitions, both solo and joint and has been exhibited by invitation in London and Bristol UK and USA. His work is represented by galleries and other organisations in Los Angeles, Vancouver and Maine USA.

Brooks holds 9 International Awards for his work in the last four years and has work featured in magazines, journals and online image repositories. His work is held in private collections in North America, the United Kingdom and European countries.


Writing on the Wall

This is a series of images sourced in southern China in the Province of Guangdong, formerly known as Canton. At the outskirts of the city of Shaoguan in the old part of the peasant area lies a cultivated area bounded by the wall from which these images are derived. The wall divides the cultivated land from the small houses where the peasants live, and is constructed from brick which has been rendered with a lime plaster and then painted. The wall has been there a long time and in parts the render is falling of exposing the brickwork underneath. During the Cultural Revolution political slogans were added to the wall for propaganda purposes for the peasant population. In more recent times this wall has been subject to modern graffiti with mobile phone numbers added and other unofficial messages which have to some extent been removed leaving in places a ghostly outline of the original message but leaving in tact the Political writings. This wall may be considered to represent the lives of the peasantry whereby over the years they have been subjugated and worn down by the effects of the cultural revolution and its' propaganda and the impact of modern life now tries to impose its' messages on them.

Structural studies in India

This series explores the dimensionality of a number of water towers in India which were built by the "British Empire" and are made from reinforced concrete. Although quite old they still maintain their function and are objects of wonder and beauty to me. They are complex and rise towards the heavens like a growing plant attracted by the sun.
My abstract representation of them is based upon their 3 dimension spatiality which cannot be expressed so successfully by a simple single image. Therefore I have created my impression of them by multiple exposure techniques and layered these in a transparent form. I hope you enjoy these interpretations as much as I did in their creation?