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Cosgrove Grassroots exposed.

Byline: Stuart Cosgrove | Broadcaster and St Johnstone fan Photographer Brian Sweeney is a risk-taker

Photographer Brian Sweeney is a risk-taker who finds a challenging beauty in his photography.

Although he is best known for his garrulous personality and his love of Glasgow nightlife, this exhibition takes risks with the remote and the understated and is the polar opposite of much of his lifestyle work where he is a prominent photographer for Channel 4, major brands, and the Sub Club, Glasgow's underground haven of electronic dance music.

The photographs in this exhibition are by contrast quiet, understated and intensely remote.

It's a love affair triggered by his grandad, Many were taken on journeys to the most remote football grounds in Scotland, to John O'Groats, to island pitches on the rugged west coast and to Ardgay, near Glen Morangie. The images are shot mostly in natural morning light as the sun struggles to rise through bleak clouds.

Although they can seem cold, isolated and unwelcoming, they are a searing comment on the real roots of a community game that has been vandalised by television, fake glamour and hyped wealth.

According to Sweeney, the collection began as far back as 1995 when "as way of fuelling boredom while on tour with s***e bands I started shooting s**t stadiums."

It was a growing reputation as a music and lifestyle photographer that took him to Iceland.

Chastened by what he saw there and the way small community clubs became the foundations of Iceland's football revolution, Sweeney returned home to Scotland where he is a proud advocate of community clubs.

On Saturday he travels with Albion Rovers, the club closest to his heart, a love affair triggered by his grandad, who first introduced him to a world of underdogs and outsiders.

On his travels, Sweeney has found an alienating beauty in the remote fields and rusting crossbars of real football.

It's a love affair triggered by his grandad, who first showed him the world of underdogs


NIGHT WORK Pictures at Sub Club

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Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Mar 20, 2016
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