Edinburgh Napier’s Degree Show Alumni Hall of Fame has welcomed five new faces as the University further strengthens its reputation within the creative industries.
Announced last night (16 May) at the show’s official opening, Dr Geoff Day, Director of Marketing and External Relations at Edinburgh Napier, welcomed Neil Poulton, Hannah Starkey, Margaret Mitchell, Dr Susanne Ramsenthaler and Mike Wilkinson as its latest inductees.
As the name suggests, all five are alumni of Edinburgh Napier, with a strong Photography theme appearing throughout this year’s inductees as the University marks two key milestones.
This year is the 35th anniversary of the University’s BA in Photography course and inductee Mike Wilkinson is from the first graduating class of this course.
2019 also marks the 25th anniversary of Edinburgh Napier’s BA (Hons) in Photography and this course is represented in the Alumni Hall of Fame by graduates Hannah Starkey, Margaret Mitchell and Dr Susanne Ramsenthaler.
The graduate links are completed by Neil Poulton who holds a BSC Industrial Design (Technology) degree from Edinburgh Napier.
A little bit more about this year’s inductees…
Neil is a Scottish-born designer, based in Paris, France. He specialises in the design of simple, mass-produced objects and has won numerous international design awards. He is best known for lighting and technology design. A lamp he designed for manufacturer, Artemide, features prominently along with an interactive display about Neil in the Scottish Design Gallery of the new V&A museum in Dundee.
The George Pompidou museum in Paris has six objects designed by Neil in its permanent contemporary collection. Time magazine included Neil in their article “The Design 100 – The people and ideas behind today’s most influential design”.
Hannah is a British photographer who specialises in staged settings of women in city environments. She was born in Belfast and is now based in London. She describes her work as “explorations of everyday experiences and observations of inner city life from a female perspective”.
Using actors within carefully considered settings, Hannah Starkey’s photographs reconstruct scenes from everyday life with the concentrated stylisation of film. Starkey’s images picture women engaged in regular routines such as loitering in the street, sitting in cafes, or passively shopping. Starkey captures these generic ‘in between’ moments of daily life with a sense of relational detachment. Her still images operate as discomforting ‘pauses’; where the banality of existence is freeze-framed in crisis point, creating reflective instances of inner contemplation, isolation, and conflicting emotion.
Her work is held in the following public collections:
• Tate Modern, London
• Victoria and Albert Museum, London
• Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin
• Castello di Rivoli, Turin
She has also published three books of her photographs.
Margaret Mitchell is a photographer whose work ranges from exploring communities and children’s worlds to long-term documentation projects on social environment, opportunity and inequality. She works with a portrait and documentary tradition, exploring the intricacies and complexities of people’s lives with a particular emphasis on childhood and ideas of place and belonging. Some of her work has spanned decades where she has revisited to observe social and political change in people’s lives over time.
Margaret's work has been exhibited widely including at the National Portrait Gallery, Somerset House and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. This year her work is being shown at ‘Format International Photography Festival’ and is currently on at both ‘Festival Circulations’ in Paris and the Open Eye gallery in Liverpool. A book containing some of her work is being published this summer by Bluecoat Press. Work is held in the collection at the National Galleries of Scotland and she is the recipient of both national and international awards including within Contemporary Issues at the Sony World Photography Awards and The Royal Photographic Society’s IPE160 Gold Award.
She works both on self-initiated projects as well as on commission and editorially for clients including Shelter, the Telegraph magazine and CNN. She previously lectured for over a decade in photography and occasionally works in collaborative arts settings alongside her personal and editorial work.
Dr Susanne Ramsenthaler
Susanne Ramsenthaler is a visual artist and part-time lecturer in Photography at Edinburgh College of Art. Her work is mostly lens-based, encompassing a wide range of practice, from antique non-silver printing techniques to video, digital imaging and computer animation.
Her interest lies in visual perception as well as things that are liminal, on the edges, or hybrids – the fine line between attraction and repulsion, for example, and all things connected with this idea. In this spirit, mixing low-tech with high-tech, old with new, has become a regular mode of working.
Susanne Ramsenthaler exhibits widely on a national and international level. Her work has been shown in the UK, USA, South Africa, Spain, Germany, Croatia, and at the St. Petersburg Biennale, Russia.
Mike is a professional editorial photographer based in Scotland. He has established a reputation for his relaxed and personable approach to the people he photographs, while producing stylish and striking images.
Over an almost 30 year period, he has gained extensive experience of working in the national media and corporate sector.
He is a former staff photographer with The Herald newspaper and photographer with The Sunday Times. His work has also regularly featured in publications such as The Times, The Scotsman, The Financial Times and New York’s Bloomberg News.
He now specialises in creating photographs for a variety of prestigious corporate clients for use in marketing campaigns, national newspapers, magazines and online.