Chester Cathedral this week welcomed a hard-hitting exhibition of images taken from the fifty-year career of renowned late photojournalist, Tom Stoddart.
The exhibition ‘Extraordinary Women: Images of Courage, Endurance, and Defiance’ will explore the courage and determination of women around the world in times of war, poverty, and hardship and will be displayed in the Cathedral between Friday 10 June and Monday 11 July.
Stoddart’s incredible long-spanning career took him all over the world and he captured countless pivotal moments in modern history: from the war in Lebanon (during which he accompanied celebrated Sunday Times foreign correspondent Marie Colvin), the fall of the Berlin Wall and covering the HIV/AIDs pandemic in sub-Saharan Africa. The exhibition of Extraordinary Women lifts images curated for Stoddart’s final book of the same title and depicts the real women upholding communities wherever he travelled.
The Very Revd Dr Tim Stratford, Dean of Chester, says: We are delighted to welcome Extraordinary Women: Images of Courage, Endurance, and Defiance to Chester Cathedral this summer. The work of Stoddart is challenging, thought-provoking, and moving: all qualities present in our own Cathedral church. We are thrilled to be able to provide a space for people to encounter these images, particularly in this Platinum Jubilee year.
The exhibition brings with it an exciting partnership between Chester Cathedral and Chester Women’s Aid. Angela Benson, Chair of Chester Women’s Aid, says:
Chester Women’s Aid (CWA) is honoured to partner with Chester Cathedral for the Extraordinary Women exhibition. Both the artist Tom Stoddart and CWA share the desire to celebrate and make visible the courage, endurance, strength and defiance of women in hardship. We believe in the right of all women to live free from fear and abuse. This thought-provoking and inspiring exhibition demonstrate Chester Cathedral’s position as a cultural and social cornerstone of our community, and we are proud to support them in this event.”
Sharon Price, co-founder of Photo North and curator of the exhibition, says:
“Tom was a guiding light towards the truth and the good for many, it was an honour to be personally asked by Tom to curate this exceptional body of work for Chester Cathedral and to be able to bring it to the people of Chester.”
Chester Cathedral is grateful to The King’s School, Chester, for their generous sponsorship of the exhibition. Visitors to Chester Cathedral can experience ‘Extraordinary Women’ between Friday 10 June and Monday 11 July. The Cathedral is open 10 am – 5 pm Monday to Saturday and 12 noon to 5 pm Sundays. The exhibition takes place alongside a range of activities in the Cathedral, including its Platinum Jubilee offer – details at chestercathedral.com.
Chester Women’s Aid will have a dedicated space alongside the exhibition with material on their work available to visitors.