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Celebrating Centenarians: 30 October- 5 November at After Nyne Gallery

NikitaMorris Avatar
15 Oct 2019 8:51AM

Olympus marks its 100th birthday this October and to celebrate they have joined with individuals also celebrating this momentous landmark with a unique portrait project.

In October 1919 Takeshi Yamashita founded the company we know today as Olympus, specialising in the manufacture of microscopes and thermometers. 100 years along the line, Olympus' history of excellence continues with a range of award-winning mirrorless cameras and high-quality lenses.

Reaching the grand old age of 100 years is obviously something that should be celebrated. And while Olympus won’t be receiving a birthday card from the Queen, we would like to mark our centenary by celebrating with fellow centenarians in a unique way.

Olympus has commissioned a group of Olympus photographers to take portraits of centenarians born in 1918 and 1919 with the results will be collated into a celebratory book and accompanying exhibition at our London art gallery this October.

The project aims to celebrate life, capturing a professional portrait for the family and to freeze time whilst collating memories and secrets to reaching this grand age to share with others.

The exhibition will be open to the public from 30 October -5 November at After Nyne Gallery, 10 Portland Road, London.

To further promote the exhibition Olympus has collaborated with Particular Books to mark the launch of a new book by Heike Faller and Valerio Vidali titled Hundred. The book was inspired by the birth of Heike Faller's niece; she began to wonder what we learn in life, and how we can talk about what we have learnt with those we love. And so she began to ask everyone she met, what did you learn in life?
She interviewed people of all ages: school children and 90-year-olds, writers and refugees, teenagers and artists, teachers and painters, mothers and friends, and came to 99 lessons. That those who have had a difficult time appreciate the good moments more. That those who have had it easy find it harder getting old. That a lot of getting old is about accepting boundaries. And of course, as one 94-year-old said to her: 'Sometimes I feel like that little girl I once was, and I wonder if I have learned anything at all.'

A bestseller in Germany, Hundred is about the simplest pleasures and hardest lessons of our lives. It's a book for people of all ages and generations to look at together - to be shared with friends at milestone birthdays, to be given by children to grandparents, and the other way round.

To support the project Particular Books are providing participants of the Portrait Project a copy of the book to keep and enjoy. Images taken from various ages within the book will be exhibited alongside the portraits and a tree will take centre stage in the gallery to encourage attendees to share their life lessons in the form of leaves to hang on the branches as we enter autumn.


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