In 2019, the Guildhall Art Gallery appointed Hannah Starkey as Guildhall Artist-in-Residence. The residency aimed to support an artist in the development of new work created in and about the Square Mile. The theme for the inaugural residency was ‘Celebrating City Women’.
For over twenty years Starkey has dedicated her photographic practise to the representation of women, usually in city settings. Starkey’s images look like spontaneous moments caught on camera, but they are in fact staged, set-up and cast. She has usually spent many hours scouting out a location and finding the subject(s) for each image.
The final artworks each depict a carefully choreographed tableau or Mise en Scene, constructed from the day to day life of women working in the City. These images are heroic and epic, multigenerational and multicultural, reflecting and celebrating the diversity of the women themselves.
Lacuna’s Stella Ioannou first met Hannah Starkey whilst working on the public realm strategy at Kings Cross and has been an avid supporter of her work ever since. She was therefore honoured to be asked to be part of Hannah’s Celebrating City Women exhibition.
More images from the collection can be found here.
Hannah’s work draws from female centric roles in the City, and adds the wonderful backdrop of some of London’s finest architecture. Hannah wonderfully depicts a site I know well and a building I have worked in through Sculpture in the City. I was deep into my work while she was shooting, and as it happens I was relaying news of Harvey Weinstein’s conviction to her. It felt, to me, like a deeply powerful moment and one she has captured so perfectly.