The Mitchell Library Reading Room is temporarily closed for refurbishment. More information ›
Wednesday 6 January 2021
From catastrophic weather events to a global pandemic and Black Lives Matters protests – the defining images of 2020 captured by Sydney Morning Herald photographers will go on public display for the first time at the State Library of NSW, from Saturday 16 January.
Now in its 10th year, the annual Photos1440 exhibition features more than 200 published and unpublished images, including award-winning photography from Herald chief photographer Nick Moir and Gold Walkley winner Kate Geraghty.
According to State Librarian John Vallance: “If anyone thinks we can do without great press photographers, think again – then visit this stunning exhibition. You will see immediately why photography is so important to the State Library’s mission to document our lives.”
“This year, the show looks back over a whole decade. Come and examine our lives in pictures. We have COVID safe measures in place to help protect the health and safety of everyone who comes through our doors.”
Dramatic scenes of firefighters fleeing a firestorm, the wreckage of the MH17 plane crash strewn amongst sunflowers and a poignant frame of Newmarch House resident Alice Bacon, who was the 100th COVID-19 victim in Australia, are among the powerful and evocative images on show.
Mags King, The Sydney Morning Herald’s Managing Photo Editor and exhibition curator said: “Our photographs are more than the first draft of history; they’re powerful gut punches that force everyone from politicians and philanthropists to mums and dads to sit up and take notice. They demand a visceral response.”
“This year’s Photos1440 showcases some of the most poignant, powerful, spectacular and quiet moments that we have had the privilege to witness. In particular, the images from the past 12 months capture the stories that have unified – and divided – us all.
This year, whilst some of us were in lockdown, Herald photographers continued to work under trying circumstances wearing PPE and working within COVID-19 guidelines. We hope that this exhibition moves people but it is really all about sharing the stories.”
Photos1440 is a free exhibition at the State Library of NSW from 16 January to 25 April 2021. All visitors are required to wear masks. Please read the Library’s Special Conditions of Entry before visiting.Download full media release