Valentine Schmidt

My first degree was in music and in many ways I still relate to music as the most powerful and moving art form; that said after realizing that my snapshots were quite good and gaining an exhibition after a visit to Iceland, I began to take photography seriously, gaining representation for my first serious body of work 'Plunge' and completing an MA at the London College of Printing in 2002.

In my photography I hope to portray a beauty in the emptiness and simplicity of spaces and the emotion that can be summonsed through photography is the reward that motivates and excites me. This may be far from the original intention of that which I am being portraying, but it is this unexpected discovery that pulls me towards an image - why the walls in a London tube station or the National Theatre?

Abstraction offers the opportunity to introduce ambiguity in scale and subject and it is this instinctive response to a subject that I feel adds the intrigue and a painterly quality to my images.

Selected Exhibitions

2019  Solo Exhibition Bayeux (London)

2014  Tension Arthouse1 (London)

2005  minus 7/plus 18 Lounge Gallery

2004 - 2007 Portfolio (PG) Photo London

2004 - 2007 Portfolio (PG) Paris Photo

2004  Summer Show The Print Gallery (The Photographers' Gallery)

2003  Plunge Paris Photo (The Photographers' Gallery London)

2003  Thou Shalt Not Kill Lounge (London)

2003  Plunge/Ice Swimmers FreshArt (London)

2003  Attentive (Group Exhibition) Lounge (London)

2003  TEXAS Amnesty Int AGM (Belfast)

2002  Take (MAP) Mirror (London)

2002  Foyer exhibition Tom Blau Gallery (London)

2002  its only words Mirror (London)

2002  Round Trip Tom Blau Gallery (London)

2002  Plunge: Chasing the London Lido Gallery 1885 (London)

2001  Plunge: Chasing the London Lido Tart (London)

2001  London Photographic Awards Steet level (Glasgow)

2000  Surface Clapham Picture House (London)

2000  London Photographic Awards Artomatic + (London)

Permanent Skaftafell Royal Geographic Society

Selected Publications/Reviews

2008 eight miles Exhibiting Photography

2008 first length in hmp Shirley Road - focal press

2007 plunge 2 Orion (The Alibi Man)

2007 swimmer Macmillan (Swimming against the stream)

2005 plunge 2 Harper Collins (The Hollow book cover)

2004 minus 7 Dazed & Confused

2003 Eight Miles Kilimanjaro

2001 Photography (Fiona Morrow) Metro

2001 Cool at the Pool (Helen Sumpter) Hot Tickets (Evening Standard)

2001 What the Photographer Saw The Independent Sunday Review

2001 Surface (feature) PHOTOART International


In the Swim (feature) British Journal of Photography

Shooting Star (feature) British Journal of Photography

Using Format