Express & Star

Market and the characters in it brought to life in exhibition

The people behind the produce are the subjects of an art exhibition right in the heart of the city.

Tegen Kimbley has put together an exhibition of the people who make Wolverhampton Outdoor Market what it is

"Wolverhampton Outdoor Market" is a celebration of the people working at the market on Cleveland Street in the city centre, comprised of a series of photos and interviews which are on display around the market.

The project is a documentary piece by Tegen Kimbley and is part of Offsite 9, a fringe art festival funded by Creative Black Country in response to British Art Show 9.

The 25-year-old documentary photographer from Bilbrook said the idea for the project had stemmed from a previous project she had done in 2015 at the old retail market on Market Square, which was demolished in 2016.

She said: "Growing up in a small village on the outskirts of Wolverhampton, a trip into the city at the weekend with my family was something I would look forward to

"I was really interested in the building and its architecture inside and after I discovered it was about to be demolished, I was lucky enough to document the building and inside before it was demolished.

"The outdoor market was then diminished in size before it moved to Cleveland Street and it seems to be thriving and there's lots of different people that come through this market.

"I've got to meet some really nice, down to earth people, so I decided to take portrait photos of them and interview them, just to get to know them and hear what they think of the market."

Ms Kimbley said her aim was to show what Wolverhampton meant to them, as well as show that these workers were the heart of the city, reflecting her own working class background.

The photos are on display at different parts of the market and Ms Kimbley said the idea was for people to make up their own minds about the exhibition and what they saw.

She said: "What I think is most important is that art is for anyone and everyone and it's so important when it comes to Wolverhampton to show that it is inclusive for everyone.

"It's up to the viewer to decide how they interpret the world and while artists want to give you a flavour of it, they don't want to spoon feed it to you, so you have the fun of seeing it for yourself.

"The market have been really supportive and without them, it would never have got off the ground, so it will be a permanent installation at the market for people to enjoy."

To find out more about this project, go to where there are more photographs, as well as interviews with the people of the market.

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