Posted on March 4, 2013
I took a trip to the Photographer’s gallery with Alex. It was the first time I had been there since the gallery found its new home on Ramillies Street. It’s a great spot; very quiet, understated, yet just yards from the frenzied consumerism of Oxford Circus. A “behind the scenes” glimpse, if you like. I used to visit the gallery often when it was in Great Newport Street. It was a bit of a sanctuary for me when I was studying. I always enjoyed the cafe, and the bookshop, and I’m pleased to say that these are still there, and much improved. I could spend hours, literally, browsing in that bookshop, but Alex had to drag me away eventually! Five floors dedicated to photography was also a real treat.
There is an excellent exhibition: Perspectives on collage currently on. Collage is something I have been thinking about a lot recently, so it was very inspiring, and gave me much to think about.
I would thoroughly recommend a visit. It really is a fantastic space (and of course I took some pictures).
© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2013
Posted on May 7, 2012
Continuing on a theme, which I first blogged about here on photographing the spaces in-between; I thought I would share with you some pictures from a project I did for my MA. I am copying and pasting the pictures, and the introduction to the book as I wrote it (almost 7 years ago now!), although there is probably much I would change now.
These images are all taken on car journeys, through the windscreen or passenger window, whilst travelling on various motorways up and down the UK. They are very low quality I’m afraid as I can’t find the original disc (they were scanned from transparency film) so I took them from the book proof pdf.
The intimate is not a space but a relationship between spaces.
The space in-between is a space between here and there, between dreams and waking.
It is invisible; a kind of nowhere, somewhere, anywhere… a place which harbours our daydreams.
Through these narrow chinks new possibilities emerge to dazzle the eye like sunlight glimpsing through a cracked wall, and we can dream a different story, or imagine another journey which our fate does not follow for a fleeting, precious instant.
These intimate, indulgent moments in which we (if only temporarily) dwell, offer us shelter, escape, hope, despair, contentment and yearning.
These images chart a period of being a passenger; of frequent journeys I have made, places I have been transported to and daydreams I have had along-the-way.
As the window frame fills with transient scenes I freeze them in an instant, drink them up greedily, and then erase them with one click of the camera shutter. Now they are mine.
Blurred by my eye, they become something other, these non-landscapes of my journeys; not here, not there, not quite anywhere. But they are stored forever in my dreams.
The quote is from Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media by Beatriz Colomina
© Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012
Posted on April 9, 2012
A photograph: a note, a thought, a flicker, a shadow, a shade, a glimpse, a glance, a moment, a blur, a trace, a shot, a capture, a fragment, an instant, an etching, a sketch, an inscription, a quotation, a resurrection, a memory…
… What is it that lies in the space in-between?
A daydream? A keepsake?
A secret time-space, revealed to the eye, captured and stored inside.
The concept in phenomenological thought of bracketing as a reductive process, allowing us to examine things up close was introduced by Edmund Husserl, the father of phenomenology. Seeing things in parenthesis is of course what we do when we take a photograph: our eye selects a scene, something interesting; we take the picture; the picture becomes an object in itself; we put it in an album, on the wall, on flickr, or facebook to share with friends and family. It has been divorced from its original context. It has been re-claimed and re-contextualised.
I love this picture, which I took in Berlin, of a girl reading on a step framed by a jungle of vivid green, punctuated by billowy white roses. I feel like I am peering into someone’s secret space every time I look at it. I think it makes you wonder, too who she is, why she is there and what she is reading. Does she sit there often? Is it her space? Or is she a tourist like me, who just came across a nice place to sit, like I came across a nice shot? What is her story? What was she doing just before, and just after this picture was taken? Is she happy or sad?
I suppose the point I’m trying to make is that it doesn’t really matter, because it was just a fleeting moment, in-between a zillion other moments, and I have used the capture I came across and borrowed for my own purposes, so it’s part of my story now.
© Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012