Melb photo show makes art from the streets

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An exhibition of street photography opening in Melbourne takes everyday moments and turns them into art.

"It's about daily life, the fleeting, the humorous, the decisive, the graceful, the ungraceful, the gritty," photographer Susan Brunialti told AAP.

"It's those moments we all walk past every single day, but street photographers capture them in a unique way."

French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson is credited as being the "grandfather" of the genre through his adoption of portable Leica cameras in the 1930s, and his belief that photography should capture a decisive moment.

"You've got to be there with your camera to actually capture it, and it's not going to happen again, so it's very ephemeral," Ms Brunialti said.

She became a photographer in 2014 after realising she was drawn to capturing fleeting moments while travelling in Japan, New York and Italy.

Now she revels in bringing a tourist's eye to Melbourne, where she grew up.

"I just find we're so fortunate to have those strong shafts of sun that almost spear through the city in between the skyscrapers," Ms Brunialti said.

Shot in the Heart of Australia, which opens on Thursday, features almost 200 prints from 39 photographers.

Most of the shots were taken in Melbourne and Sydney, but there are works from around Australia.

The images in Shot in the Heart also document urban life during the pandemic. For example, there are more than a few images of people wearing masks, and even a picture of a person being wheeled into an ambulance.

The exhibition is run by the Australian Association of Street Photographers and opens on Thursday at Frater, McCubbin and Hammond Galleries.

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