WELSH artist, Gareth Phillips currently has his exhibition Interstates of Becoming on display at the Latrobe Regional Gallery (LRG).

The work is being exhibited in Gallery 3 until June 23 this year, as part of the PHOTO2024 International Festival of Photography.

After months of conceptualising, four years of tracing the Himalayas and a month of physically putting the work together, Mr Phillips’ photobook creation is open to observers.

“I probably spent six months developing the idea, doing many tests with models at home in Spain,” he explained.

“I would create many versions of this, using the ideas from this photobook and the possibilities to come up with this arrangement and design, which is being fine-tuned here on site.

“I didn’t know this was going to happen, but I always knew that the work would never be a traditional photobook. I am trying to redefine what a photobook can be, how we look at photobooks, and even what a photobook is.”

From an editorial, documentary, and photography background, Mr Phillips enjoys the deepest depths of a story. He told the Express that he purposely finds stories that allow him to work on the narrative and get to the real heart of the issue.

The ‘heart’ of Interstates of Becoming is the relationship between humans and their shared environments, specifically the Himalayan mountains of Northwest India. The piece features fragments of concrete and steel, layering out the photobook on a large-scale level, where viewers can explore the depth of the impact walking through it.

All the materials for the work were sourced locally in Latrobe City.

Perspective: Gareth Phillips’ work is challenging the idea of what a photobook is, and is currently on display at Latrobe Regional Gallery. Photograph supplied

A Latrobe City Council spokesperson said, “Latrobe City is the perfect place for artists because we can access affordable raw materials as an industrial heartland.”

“It is exciting that Welsh artist, Gareth Phillips was able to find materials within the local area for his exhibition Interstates of Becoming, which was included in Latrobe Regional Gallery’s Autumn exhibition season.”

Mr Phillips added, “Everything that I do is almost always locally sourced because of all the different areas in which I work; it’s working with communities and the local area where my art is going to be shown because they are ambitious, large photobooks sculptures and installations.”

“I have been in Morwell for a month now, and Morwell has found its way into this work. And I like that. I think that is an important part of making art.”

Like all who finish a long-term project, Mr Phillips said he had mixed feelings about completing the installation in Morwell.

“Now, having time to reflect – and I think this is the most wonderful part of doing projects like this – I am very proud of what I have been able to do and the contribution I have made to the visual landscape of photobooks,” he said.

“By the time we got to the very end, the very kind of finish, I couldn’t wait to step away from it because I was so deeply immersed in it, and it pushed me to the edge of creativity.”

Mr Phillips is a photographer who explores the contemporary definitions of the photobook, creating them as objects, sculptures, and installations. He has worked for groups such as the Wall Street Journal, Sunday Times Magazine, The Guardian, CNN, and The New York Times. He also told the Express that he had been working on photobooks since 2006, but hadn’t started installation-wise until 2013.

The next stop for Mr Phillips is an installation in Swansea, in his homeland of Wales.

He said that what he has learnt from this work will go into other works in years to come.

“I want them to test me, to break me. Without being broken, I’m not really going to the edge I want to, and with that, the magic of creativity will happen,” he said.

For aspiring artists, Mr Phillips said, “Stand on the shoulders of everyone else. All the work that has been done is your duty to stand on the shoulders and grow from them. Grow by what has already been done, add on top of everything that has been done, and never give up.”

“If I have to work all day and produce my work at night, so be it. This isn’t for financial gain. It’s simply because I don’t have the capacity to turn this off. So, if that is in you as an artist or creative, embrace it.”

For more information on Gareth Phillips and his work, go to