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Exhibition: The Herder Boys of Lesotho – Tom Oldham

Simon Skinner - 5 years ago

Tom Oldham is a rare photographer. Rare, in that alongside his hugely impressive commercial work, including campaigns for AdidasSamsung and a host of music & sports magazines including regular covers and portraits, [Nick CaveUsain BoltSir Richard BransonJose Mourinho, and Damon Albarn] for Mojo and Four Four Two magazines, [not to mention PhotoBite]; Tom’s real passion lies within his personal work. One such project is hitting London later this month and sees Tom’s first solo West End exhibition, The Herder Boys of Lesotho, opening its doors for us all to savour

Tom first visited Lesotho in 2009, shooting for the NGO Riders for Health, on a whistle-stop shoot travelling through this mountain kingdom. On the winding, climbing roads he’d see herder boys tending to their animals and immediately imagined a series of images that he just couldn’t shake from his mind.

The Herder Boys of Lesotho by Tom Oldham. 

Their distinctive silhouettes against the sky, these icons of Lesotho wrapped in the woollen blankets that provide their only protection from an intense sun or a brutal winter. The herder boys work astonishingly hard, for very low pay, in the toughest conditions imaginable.

The Herder Boys of Lesotho by Tom Oldham. 

It is the only option available to some, who often have very little formal education and can enter into this employment from early childhood. In November 2016, Tom was able to return to Lesotho to shoot the portraits that make up this new exhibition, and with some valuable assistance from the team at Riders for Health, he came home with some extremely special, new work.

This new exhibition has been supported by Hasselblad, and it has been printed and framed by Metro Imaging.

The Herder Boys of Lesotho by Tom Oldham. 

The Herder Boys of Lesotho by Tom Oldham. The exhibition supported by Hasselblad and Metro Imaging, takes place at The White Space in Great Newport Street from 26th June 2017.

Tom Oldham‘s Herder Boys of Lesotho is being hosted at the White Space Gallery, Great Newport Street, just off Leicester Square in London between June 26th and July 1st. 11am-7pm daily.

About the author

Read Exhibition: The Herder Boys of Lesotho – Tom Oldham

Simon Skinner

Co-founder // Editor

Having spent many years working in various pockets of the music industry, and always with a camera in hand, Simon has worked with organisations such as Warner/Chappell, Food Records and ultimately, co-founding the innovative independent record label, Izumi Records before moving fully into the world of publishing in 2007. Amongst numerous other projects in the last decade, he has been responsible for a number of specialist photo trade magazines and journals for the filmmaking and photography communities, along with a coffee table book entitled, "Great Britons of Photography' which he produced with Peter Dench and Leica. Now heading up PhotoBite, Simon and the team have set themselves a task of delivering informative and inspirational content for photographers of all levels, from the beginner, shooting with smartphones, to the seasoned photographer and filmmaker.