guest book

reviews & guest book


please scroll down to add a comment


“A beautifully and expensively produced gallery of highly artistic and stunningly executed photographs. There are pictures that give a sense of the soaring scale of this vaulted building, and yet there is also a sharp focus on tiny, charming details that would easily be missed when walking around the chapel. The use of glossy paper shows off the images well, and the photographs are interspersed with poetic musings. It is an outstanding architectural study which successfully captures the historic beauty of a remarkable building.”
– review by Rubery Book Award judges (FOCUSED on King’s College Chapel was shortlisted for 2021 Rubery Book Award, Non-Fiction category)

“I love this [book, FOCUSED on King’s College Chapel]. The light is superb, an active agent in its own right, especially the dapples and speckles. Not just an adjunct of form… [This] must be the most handsome tribute ever paid to a single building. With its blend of words and diverse visual voices it is an Alleluia Chorus.”
– Prof Martin Kemp, History of Art, Trinity College, Oxford

“Here, indeed, is beauty. Sara has the rare skill of drawing out the intimate, the special, the unique spirit of each place. And even if you know these libraries well, these pictures will give you fresh eyes, an enlivened spirit and a gladdened heart.”
– Dame Fiona Reynolds, Master, Emmanuel College, Cambridge

“I think Sara Rawlinson is a terrific photographer. She has a unique eye. The details and angles she chooses are very  unusual, very much her own, but they serve her subject, never herself – the title of the book is well chosen.”
– Andrew, New York

“Sara’s book is feast for the eye and imagination. No detail escapes the artist’s lens. The idea of the library is deconstructed into unfamiliar shapes and angles, a shaft of light in a stair well, a solitary chair tucked by a bookcase, a long view up to a decorative ceiling. And yet the whole is put back to together, more than its parts, as we gaze at the photographs and fill the spaces withmemory and reverence, for what Sara calls her ‘houses of the holy’.”
– Dr Jessica Gardner, The University Librarian, University of Cambridge

“Cambridge is a city with possibly the highest density of libraries in the world. In this visual encomium Sara restricts herself to surveying the libraries of the 31 Colleges of the University, and finds remarkable continuities amid the diversity of buildings spanning more than 500 years. She has an outstanding eye for the quirky detail, the unusual juxtaposition, the wear-and-tear which can upset a perfect symmetry. This book reminds us that these buildings are no mere architectural showpieces, but places of continual use by generations of scholars, the repositories of inherited knowledge which underpin the research and teaching of today.”
– Dr Nicolas Bell, Librarian, Trinity College, Cambridge

“Fabulous – it’s like photography finally meets fine art!”

“Each of your exhibitions is so unique, I can’t wait to see what you do next!”

“Yours has been my favourite exhibition at the Heong Gallery, and [whispering] I’ve been to all the others.”

A woman was scooting along the bench looking at the libraries exhibition. She was so engrossed that she literally slid right off the end of the bench (and still excitedly came to my next exhibition).



27 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Kristin Tabb
2 years ago

Cherry Picker II is simply wonderful, because it is the exact view I have longed to see the chapel from. It feels ethereal, heavenly, and sublime. And it gets you that much closer to the beauty of the ceiling work!

Rebecca Franks
2 years ago

Hi Sara,

Spectacular photos! I was a student at King’s and I will never forget that chapel. It always has such a special feeling, but your pictures have revealed even more about it. Thank you.

Rebecca

Martin White
2 years ago

Hi Sara, thanks for another fabulous Cambridge exhibition. I particularly like the high level shots from the cherry picker, as does everyone else clearly. Cherry picker II creates a real sense of majesty and the sole figure in the aisle makes one in awe of the scale – great shot. Can’t wait to see what you do next!

Mansoor
2 years ago

Sara, I’ve been a member of King’s for 45 years and so seen very many photographs of the chapel. Yours are certainly the best I’ve ever seen.
It would be great if you could publish a book of them.

Alex Allen
2 years ago

Thank you for sharing your beautiful photos with the world. You have managed to capture the awe a person feels when entering the chapel for the first time wonderfully.

Seb Falk
2 years ago

Beautiful pictures, thank you! I love the ones from a raised up position that capture the sense of space and light in the chapel.

Gordon Sutehall
2 years ago

We liked your cherry-picker image “From Up On High” at your Open Studio last year and it’s now framed on our wall at home (with some others of yours). This super series does great justice to the inspired artists and craftsmen who created the Chapel. I think my personal favourite has to be “Fan 1”, simply because it made me gasp at first sight. It is marvellous that you had such a wonderful opportunity over such an extended period to give us all the benefits of views we could not otherwise possibly experience.

Zlatko Pozeg
2 years ago

sara , really the best images of kings since ackermanns cambridge. bravo!!
the text accompanying equally terrific

cindy bittner
2 years ago

Dear Sara, With profound thanks and heartfelt gratitude for this most amazing ‘Gallery of Glory’ of our beloved King’s College Chapel. My husband and I were blessed to attend the 2015 Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, return in 2018 for the Advent Processional and were to return for Easter at King’s and I was to stay on until June 26 to volunteer in the chapel, choir and development offices but… Many of your magnificent photos bring back such wonderful memoires… recalling with great fondness our choral stalls for the various Evensongs and Eucharist services, the awe inspiring dancing of the colours of the windows from 2 pm to 6 pm for the Festival in December, seeing (and playing !!!) the organ in 2015 and 2018, taking that walk up to the roof (and also amazed at the vista up top even though it was a drizzling day in 2018). I close my eyes and ‘see’ the amazing beauty of the fan vaulting, the tracery and stone work – there was not a single detail of that amazing space that you did not capture in this ‘meditation’. I had to chuckle when you talked about working with the verger on the lighting of the candles as that was one of the volunteer ‘tasks’ I was hoping would be part of my volunteering activities! After seeing all of these glorious photos I will, when God willing we are able to return, revisit with an even more personal connection to and appreciation… Read more »

Paul Cann
2 years ago

Sara

This is a wonderful celebration of an extraordinary building. I was a choral scholar in the ’70s, love the chapel so much, and yet its familiarity became somehow numbing to me over the years. Thank you for making it so fresh again, and for the amazing infusion of light you have captured so well…and the view vertically upwards is something else.

Kevinmcculloug19
2 years ago

Sara, It’s not that I don’t have a comment, it’s just that words are just words and the very best pictures of the very best things don’t need them. Thank you for finding the time to do this, it really is appreciated.
Kevin

Mark Warman
2 years ago

As you know from my Twitter feed, I am in awe of the way you’ve captured the extraordinary lightness of this wonderful building – both the lightness of its filigree stone tracery as well as the light that pours through the glorious medieval stained glass. Thank you, Sara.

Sarah
2 years ago

Fabulous pictures Sara, I’ve shared with other Kingswo/men too, and despite these being familiar views to us, you’ve captured them in an unexpectedly fresh light. Love the often-overlooked views of the west door, and also the medieval passages up to and on the roof – very atmospheric. Brilliant to see these especially whilst visiting in person isn’t an option. Good to hear there may also be a book of these brilliant photos too.

Esther and Nick
2 years ago

We love them! My favorite is the stained glass windows.

Dave
2 years ago

Such and amazing set of photographs, it is amazing to capture a few magical moments in the extremely long lifespan of the chapel. I am inspired to go and visit once we are able to again. Your unique perspective gives the place the extra grandure!

Anke
2 years ago

Many congratulations on the exhibition. It reminds of the sheer awe the chapel inspires, and is particularly appreciated now that visiting is not possible.

Regarding the vote: I love cherry picker II! It would be wonderful to have this window into a bird’s eye view of the chapel for my rather more mundane wall.

Thank you for bringing this virtual experience to the world.

Carl White
2 years ago

Well done Sarah! Really great photos..from grandiose to lovely little intimate patches of light. Because I’ve never been up there I found the the roof pictures really fascinating. Voted for the choir stalls, for personal memory reason…they’re all super.

Luca
2 years ago

Much enjoyed this exhibition! I’ve many a time admired the majesty of the building, which is only augmented by the sublime music being made inside. Looking forward to be back soon!

Vicki Ambery - Smith
2 years ago

Hi Sarah, what a wonderful exhibition! You HAVE been busy. Good luck! Vicki x

Mark Hayes
2 years ago

Voted for ‘Candlelit West’ as my favourite. You can tell the choir have literally just left the stalls!

Hrvoje Tkalcic
2 years ago

Hi Sara, thank you for taking us there through your photographs. It must have been a great experience to have access to, get so intimately close with this marvelous part of Cambridge’s history. Well done!

Rosemary Talbot
2 years ago

Sara, I really can’t choose just one image as they are all stunning. I know how much this project has meant to you, personally and professionally, so thank you for sharing your thoughts and processes as you spent time in the Chapel over the months. Your words and images give us really privileged access to this wonderful place and to your experience there.

Ioannis Kotsiopoulos
2 years ago

I chose Cherry Picker II: the vast building and the tiny figure to remind of the insignificance of Man even inside his Own creations. Technically, if i may have one remark, I would like to have the picture underexposed by half a stop – at least as it appears in my monitor and in comparison with other pictures.
Overall, well done Sara, thanks for the opprtunity to see your latest work and your perfect non-converging verticals.

Leslie
2 years ago

Sara, thank you so much for this well-thought-out and gorgeous exhibition. All the photos are amazing. I particularly enjoyed the photographs in “Up” and “Rise” because they capture awe-inspiring views. The images and written reflections on the space made me think a lot about the diverse uses of religious space. Thank you for all your hard word, creativity, and talent–what a joy to experience these images all the way from Kentucky! –Leslie

Andrea Thunem
2 years ago

Wow! Just wow. I was transported. Your photographs and your commentary put me right there experiencing, quite possibly, what you experienced while you were photographing all this. And an extra treat for me was your elucidating side comments embedded as a subtext within each of your photographs. Thank you for such a treat, bringing me into your world and into a world that as you say has existed for hundreds of years. It’s how each of us tend to look at things and now because of “FOCUSED” I have experienced King’s College Chapel in a new light and I feel different because of it.

John Wagstaff
2 years ago

Sara, once again you give us a masterclass in photography, and remind us why photographic professionals still matter. So many details to enjoy on each picture, and the common (well, almost) them of light is very welcome in these rather “dark” days. I really hope that you will publish these photos as a printed book (though I can imagine that the photos would lose something in being transferred from digital to printed images). King’s should be very grateful for your amazing work. Please continue to grace Cambridge with your sunny presence, and your professionalism!

Anthony D Barraclough
2 years ago

An absolutely beautiful photographic journey with magnificent images and a well written inspirational story. Thank you it an unforgettable experience

Shopping Cart
Want something? Please ask: hello@sararawlinson.com
Scroll to Top