“As an editorial photographer my influences range from Walker Evans to William Klein. I have always worked with 35mm cameras and until very recently all of my work has been on film. I see my photographic mission to be about extracting an intimacy from my subjects and presenting photography as a visual argument.”
Having studied fine art in Yorkshire, Syd began his photography practice in the early 1970s, following a move to Australia. In Sydney, he worked as a freelance photojournalist for newspapers such as Nation Review, The Age, and Digger. In 1975 he had a solo exhibition of his photographs, ‘Working Class Heroes’ at the Sydney Film-makers Cooperative. In 1976, Syd returned to London and he established the design and photography partnership ‘Hot Pink Heart/Red Wedge Graphics’ which evolved into the current agency ‘Graphicsi’. Syd become one of the key activists in the movement Rock against Racism. He was the photographer and one of the designers of the RAR magazine ‘Temporary hoarding’ which was published between 1976 – 1981. During the 1980s, as well as producing photographs for the music press, and graphics for the public and private sector, Syd co-edited, and was art director of, a series of photographic books that includes the award winning Day in the Life of London, and Ireland: A Week in the Life of a Nation. His work has been widely published and is in numerous collections including The V&A, The Photographers’ Gallery, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Erick Frank Fine Art, Rock Archive and Autograph. Syds’ photographs from the 1970s were featured in the exhibition ‘A Riot of Our Own’ at Chelsea Space in 2008 and in 2012 in Croatia as a part of the International Biennale organised by the Museum of Contempory Art Istria.
Syd’s One Planet Living commission will focus on Culture and Community.