Photographing market life

December 1, 2021

Kumar Sivam has worked for many years as a farm vet in Cornwall and his work is rooted in his personal links with the livestock industry.

Kumar aims to show aspects of people’s working lives as well as the relationship they have with their animals.

Kumar’s current project is based at Truro Livestock Market. He has been working here for a few months looking at the people who work there, the farmers and others who come along, as well as the animals who pass through the market.

This project is built around a collaboration with the auctioneer team from Lodge & Thomas and all the people who come to the market. Kumar visits the market most weeks so that he has become a familiar part of what is going on. In this way, his work can best reflect the activities.

The Prince’s Countryside Fund recently published a report, More than a Mart, looking at the social value of auction marts in the UK. Kumar’s photography project brings to life the findings of this report, that more than just a place to buy and sell livestock, they play a part in improving farmers’ health and wellbeing.

Kumar is already showing some of his farming work in the market café. Early in 2022 he will have a much more extensive show of his market work. This will be an important part of encouraging people outside the livestock industry to take a look at what goes on, so that they are encouraged to develop a realistic and positive view of the activities, the people and the animals.

You can see Kumar’s market work at his Instagram account: trurolivestockmarket