Driven to do Better
You wont be surprised to learn that I love photography, choosing to do a photography degree probably gave it away. Therefore you wont be astonished to hear that while in London last week I took a trip to the Getty Images Gallery which is holding a rather special exhibition at the moment. ‘Driven to do better’ is a Santander sponsored display of some rather wonderful F1 photographs taken throughout the ages at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
The gallery is located just off Oxford Street and is pretty hard to miss as it’s decorated head to toe with Santander sponsorship! Once you get over the mass amount of red and white and step inside you’re greeted with a fantastic sight, a gallery space full of F1 photographs, old and new.
The exhibition was curated by Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, and it really does feature some special moments in the history of the British Grand Prix. In the collection are examples that show the passion of the British fans, the historic events and characters plus the wonderful atmosphere. The photographs span the years, from the first British Grand Prix, to Mansell giving Senna a lift back to the pits after his win in 1991 to Mark Webber’s triumphant victory in 2010. The British Grand Prix has been the place for many a memory, and the exhibition does well to highlight them. Giving those who have witnessed these events a gentle reminder, and those of us who were not lucky enough to see them live a starting point for our learning. Lewis and Jenson have also selected their personal five favourite photographs and written about why they appeal to them, and what memories and significance they hold for them individually.
On a personal note I was most interested in the impressive amount of older images from the archives Getty has revealed. It’s not often we as fans get the opportunity to get up close to some very iconic moments in the sport in this type of black and white glory. These photographs allow you into this historic world from the past, drivers who long hung up their race overalls, and teams that haven’t tured up to Grand Prix in many years. These iconic figures you only ever read about in books, right in front of you, captured in the frame. Seeing how close and crazy (and not to mention how deaf ) the photographers 50-60 years ago must have been. Lines of them right next to the cars as they fly round a corner, using a medium format or 35mm film camera! The absolute talent of these forgotten professionals is displayed in all their brilliance here and it’s so easy to get caught up in. Just wow!
It’s a nicely balanced collection of atmosphere, historic events and behind the scenes. Well displayed to emphasize the beauty and talent of F1 photography. As a fan of F1, especially the photography, I loved this small section of London. It’s not a huge gallery but it is certainly a nice place to spend an hour for any fan of photography, Formula 1, or both. If you’re in London, and find yourself passing through Oxford Street, or have an hour or two spare why not head down there? Admission is free, and it’s open until 5:30pm every day (except Sundays). You can find more information about the exhibition plus other events at the Getty Images Gallery here.