Road to 2012: A Local Story
National Portrait Gallery
Road to 2012
A local story
National Portrait Gallery/BT commission and exhibition to document groups in the five Olympic boroughs
During 2011 and 2012, Katherine spent over a year meeting and documenting sports and community groups in East London. At a time when investment was pouring into the area and sport was the highest priority, Katherine found the grass roots groups where volunteers work each week to support and inspire local people.
Photographs and oral histories were published on the Road to 2012 website in the run-up to the Games and are still available.
Exhibition & Reviews
Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery
15 portraits from this series were on display at the National Portrait Gallery as part of Road to 2012: Aiming High from 19 July to 23 September 2012, prior to this they were on display on The Viewtube in the Olympic Park.
- See The Telegraphs review – 19 July 2012
- Review of exhibition at The Viewtube in 2011, The Standard: Spirit of Youth in Sport – 15 August 2011
My favourite section, however, is Local Story, Katherine Green’s pictures of sporting activity within the Olympic host boroughs. And it is not all football on Hackney Marshes. Those living within the shadow of the new stadium sail, row and ride horses. Plus, in the case of Gary, a member of the Blackheath Fencing Club, twirl a foil. Staring hard down the lens, this inner-city d’Artagnan broods and bristles, his weapon at the ready for a quick thrust. You would need to be brave to take him on.
As brave as Levi, perhaps, the young pugilist at the Bethnal Green Boxing Club whose portrait is one of the few in the show to raise a smile. A picture of red-shirted determination, Levi does his best to look as warrior-like as he can while wearing a pair of over-sized boxing gloves that take up most of his arms.
It is a lovely piece, warm, inclusive, not a little inspiring. Precisely what we hope the Games will turn out to be.