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Forty Photographs of Contemporary Britain at Tate Britain
Grace Lau, Hastings Summer 2005. © Grace Lau. Courtesy of the Artist.

LONDON.-Following an open competition, forty photographs of contemporary Britain have been selected by a panel of experts for display as part of Tate Britain’s current How We Are: Photographing Britain show. Like the exhibition, which brings together over 500 images by 100 photographers, the winning entries demonstrate a wide range of approaches from portraiture to landscape and from formal to documentary photography. They represent some of the diverse ways we see Britain and its people.

A huge range of subjects and styles emerges from the selected photographs: a hen party struggling with Stetsons on a windy pier, a fuzzy screen-grab from Big Brother, an abstract cappuccino, a traditional black and white portrait, a graphic view of striped deck-chairs, an isolated farm-house amid snow-topped mountains and abandoned tyres, a bland suburban bungalow, a caravan in a Cornish field, an action shot of urban free-running, and a Saturday night out captured on camera-phone.

The photographs were all submitted as part of How We Are Now, an online photography project launched by Tate Britain on 22 May to tie in with How We Are. Tate Online (, together with creative online partner BT, developed the project in partnership with global online photosharing community Flickr ( and The Observer website. Members of the public were invited to submit photographs of their personal vision of Britain and its people in 2007 and add their photographs to the How We Are Now Group on Photographs had to illustrate one of four themes explored in the exhibition: portrait, landscape, still life or documentary.

A total of 3,330 people took part in How We Are Now and 7,876 photographs were submitted: 2,020 portrait, 2,276 landscape, 1,218 still life; and 2,114 documentary. Until now all images have been streamed onto screens at Tate Britain and on Tate Online, and The Observer’s website. The judging panel chose 10 photographs from each of the four themes to form the final display, which will be shown at Tate Britain from 6 August to 2 September 2007. These images will also be archived on Tate Online as part of the exhibition's website.

The judges were Susan Bright and Val Williams, co-curators of How We Are; Derek Ridgers, photographer; Heather Champ, Flickr Community Manager and Greg Whitmore, Observer Picture Editor.

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