At RMIT, I often researched in the library, and came across a whole bunch of late 19th and early 20th century books on great houses and Castles, mostly in the British Isles. In making collages, I discovered a fascination with these photographs by amateur and professional photographers, in black and white, where they had to work with natural light to memorialize crumbling old houses, castles and ruins, moving quickly to save local history, unvarnished, with newly affordable and accessible photography.
Their work, mostly documentary, had weight. They had captured not only a last look of ancient history before it was lost forever, but in a style that was evocative of stills from films.
I was delighted to find that The British Library is digitising it’s old collection, I’m finding gems like the above that I’m doing a little series around, called “Picturesque Places of Note”.
I was also super inspired last night by a exhibition at the Five Walls Project space called SOMETHING’S TRYING TO TELL US SOME THINGS
Check it out, it’s good.