The grand re-opening of the Leica store in Manchester was a wonderful reminder of all that is best about this city: talent, politics and quirkiness. Leica’s store is the dream shop for camera experts and photography lovers alike, but it is also somewhere you could come to learn about the equipment and to find inspiration to kickstart the passion. There is something for everyone in this gorgeous little store on Police Street.
The official launch took place on the 10th August, and went by in a whirlwind of fabulous outfits, flowing wine and, of course, cameras everywhere. The evening was relaxed, with just enough pomp and ceremony to mark such a special occasion. The ribbon cutting was especially moving and the love for the store came across from all the team, giving the sense of a family run business that has been a passion- project for many years.
The store works on two levels, quite literally in this case, as the shop can be found upstairs and the gallery downstairs. You walk into a gorgeous display of fabulous cameras (a full range!) behind artfully arranged glass boxes, and are led through to the stairs at the back, leading you down into the exhibition space. The first photographer to be shown is the rightfully famous Koo Stark, whose life and talent have been in the spotlight for many years.
Koo Stark’s Kintsugi exhibition, is composed of a selection of personal photographs capturing fleeting moments from the last three decades of her fascinating life. From her personal favourite, a stunning shot of the Dalai Lama, through to erotic silhouettes, wildlife and people doing yoga up mountainsides, there is a flair and originality to all her work that is entirely unique. This, initially simple- looking, black and white collection has a depth and humour about it that conveys the most wonderful stories and glimpses into the artists life.
Koo Stark was the perfect choice to kick off the store’s opening and, if the crowds from the launch tell us anything, we can be sure of much more to come. The Kintsugi exhibition will be open for the next month, so make sure you visit to enjoy this breath-taking series of photographs and, of course, have a look around the new Leica store itself. It’s a much needed addition to the Manchester scene, and one for us all to enjoy.