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Getting to know this year’s selection 

 The Feast, Inside, from the series Paintings, Dreams and Love © Yushi Li and Steph Wilson 

Each year, with apprehension and glee, we prepare ourselves for the announcement of Foam Talent 2022. Showcasing a global curation of emerging photographers, Foam take us into their mind palace of visual art and, significantly, who is coming to the forefront of the scene. Investigating concepts of climate change, political conflict, discrimination, displacement, social justice and so forth – with each Foam Talent exhibition (and magazine issue), we are swept into the eye of the creator, able to see and experience life beyond our own normal capacity. This year, each talent presents and goes into a conversation with, an issue of the times; offering an accessible opening into both the beauty of the medium and the significance it can have in creating change. This year, Foam Talent saw a record high in submissions (1938 to be exact), and so it is an honour to be able to experience the work of those who were selected. 

From the series Malign Influences/The Holy Mountains © Diego Moreno 

With our usual impatience, Glamcult managed to sneak a quick preview prior to the launch of the event, and with unquestionable certainty – it was incredible. Entering the space, you are first greeted by the provocative (and in some senses, sinister) works of Diego Moreno. Describing the feeling of bearing witness to the work, FOAM explain, “It throbs and pulses with a horror and magnetism that simultaneously pull you in and make you want to look away”. The catch? You can’t. From a distorted portrait of Moreno as a baby to a class picture featuring only the heads of satan; his work is visceral, however, at the same time oddly therapeutic. It is without guilt or shame Morena places his narrative on these traditional frameworks, allowing both himself and his artistry to exist as a separate entity beyond the native picture itself. 

Going deeper into the space, we also saw works by Yushi Li (who also is featured on the cover of Foam Talent). The artist’s mission is to probe the notion of the male gaze, and subsequently find what it means to represent something beyond this binary – or, advert the concept entirely. From the (somewhat disconcerting (yet serene) scene of a man in the bathtub with an octopus laying on top of him – to another subject, nude, staring deeply into the red eyes of a rabbit, her work decontextualises the concept of a ‘gendered lens’, and quite simply share the Yushi Li vision. We also saw a collection of highly emotive works by Ghazaleh Rezaei, whose work The Martyrs explores the interpersonal relations of Iran and the Iraq war, alongside exploring the experience of the pandemic within Iran. Alongside this, the deeply evocative work of Lina Geoushy caught our eye. Geoushy’s project, Shame Less explores the conversation of sexual violence and harassment in her motherland – Egypt. Standing up for women, her portraits show individuals – often with their eyes covered by a gold mask – in their natural environment surrounded by handwritten text.

Overall, this is a deeply resonant curation of artists, all sharing their vulnerabilities and investigations into the world around them. Make sure to check out the exhibition at Foam, alongside the Foam Magazine 2022 edition. 


Running until 18 Jan 2023

See more here! 

All images courtesy of the photographers

Words by Grace Powell