J A Mortram is a documentary photographer and environmental portraitist based in Dereham, East Anglia, UK. Jim’s work is centred on creating an expansive long-form photographic essay Small Town Inertia which explores the intimate and untold stories of marginalised individuals in the small rural community in which he lives.

It pulls me down. The dreams when I wake from them they seem to make everything blacker, the darkness that I see now feels so much blacker. I can see the daylight in my mind when I remember something but it’s all in my mind, I’m not seeing it but in my dreams the light’s right in front of my eyes, not in my mind, there’s just no darkness at all when I dream.“
— David, from Postcards from the black

Jim’s photography has been awarded and published widely. In 2013 the British Journal of Photography featured his project in January 2013 and included Mortram in its list of 20 world photographers to watch.
In May 2012 Jim became a member of Aletheia Photos.

His stories ‚Living With Epilepsy‚ and ‚Electric Tears and All Their Portent‚ have recently been published in a series of booklets from the art publisher Café Royal Books (and were sold out the same day).

Jim’s work was also featured in an American photography exhibition, Photoville, in Brooklyn in September 2013 as the only British work shown.

Upcoming Exhibition:
Red Light Gallery, Norwich

Small Town Inertia receives its first major show in Norfolk at the Red Light Gallery in Norwich from November 11-23. Private view on Sunday, November 17th 2013, from 2 – 4.30 pm.
The gallery is open daily from 12-6, and closed on Thursdays.
(5 st Benedicts View / Grapes Hill, Norwich NR2 4HH)

Upcoming Talk:
„From The Inside: John Myers and Jim Mortram in Conversation with Karen Newman“

Mon 25 Nov, 7pm
Hexagon Theatre / mac birmingham
Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham

Some Cities is creating a range of opportunities for everyone to engage with photography, in order to develop an interactive photographic archive of Birmingham, made by the people who live, work and visit the city.

As part of our program of activities, Some Cities is pleased to announce the first of our talks program at mac birmingham. The talks aim to examine and explore a range of issues central to contemporary photographic practice, through examinations of the work, methodologies and strategies of individual photographers.

The first talk will examine the relationship between the photographer and the communities who allow them to document their lives. The talk will be chaired by Karen Newman, former curator at the Open Eye Gallery and research fellow (digital media) at Coventry University.

For the past three years, Jim Mortram has intimately photographed the lives of people within the same three-mile radius of his hometown, Dereham in East Anglia for his project, small town inertia.

Learn more about the event here and on the Some Cities website.

For this feature we only picked two of Jim’s market town stories – of David and Tilney1 – but a lot more of Jim’s impressive work can be explored on his project website, Tumblr, and Facebook page:

You can also have a look at ACMV’s previous feature of ‚Market Town‘ here.

Small Town Inertia is funded by donations. If you would like to support Jim and help fund coming stories, please donate via PayPal to james.mortram (at) gmail (dot) com Thanks!

All images © J A Mortram

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