SRA sponsors new exhibition of Somerset flood photos by Matilda Temperley

A new show of photographs by renowned Somerset-based photographer Matilda Temperley reflects on ten years since the devastating floods of 2013-14.

Called Under the Surface – and supported by Somerset Rivers Authority – the exhibition is at Somerset Rural Life Museum, Glastonbury from Saturday 2 March to Sunday 19 May.

It will feature photographs from Matilda Temperley’s sold-out publication Under the Surface: Somerset Floods, alongside previously unpublished colour photographs taken during the winter of 2013-14. Pictured at the top of this page: Christine Gray, 2014.

Also on display will be newly commissioned photographs, reflecting on changes to the Somerset landscape over the past decade.

Scruff kayaking, 2023: one of the new colour colour photographs in Matilda Temperley’s exhibition at Somerset Rural Life Museum from 2 March 2024.

Alongside Under the Surface, a programme of events and activities will take place supported by Somerset Rivers Authority (SRA). These include family activities during the Easter Holidays, run in collaboration with the RSPCA and Somerset Wildlife Trust, where visitors can take part in climate-themed craft activities; a series of ‘Flood Cafes’, where flood-affected people can gather and discuss flooding issues in a friendly relaxed environment; and talks from the SRA and its partners about Somerset water and wildlife, and the future of water in Somerset.

SRA Chair Councillor Mike Stanton said: “Somerset Rivers Authority came into existence because of the floods of 2013-14, and people involved with the SRA are still very strongly motivated by what happened then. Our main purpose is to reduce the risks and impacts of flooding across Somerset. We’re supporting this exhibition because the more people understand how Somerset is threatened by flooding, the more we can do together to protect ourselves and to adapt.”

Matilda Temperley said: “Ten years on from Under the Surface, climate change has meant flooding events around the globe are constantly in our news. This latest exhibition reflects on the impact of flooding on the Somerset Levels and successes and failures in flood management over the last decade.”

Exhibitions and Programme Manager Sarah Cox said: “This is the latest in a series of ambitious temporary exhibitions with a strong focus on communicating rural stories through art and photography. We are delighted to be collaborating with Matilda Temperley and the Somerset Rivers Authority to create an exhibition and events programme that will offer visitors a space to reflect on the important subject of flooding and its impact over the county.”

For more information go to to the Somerset Rural Life Museum website.

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