It was a strange thing, coming up with ideas to document a community that lives relatively close but I don't actually know anything about, nor, at first glance, can really relate to. I have never lived in a house with more than 3 stories / 5 neighbours but I have lived for a long time in a house that was considered uninhabitable for Swiss people, too old, no heating except for a wood-fired stove, no warm water and a medieval sanitation system. It was a big house, rumoured to have been a monastery in the past, with a garden, two attics and three cellars plus a huge barn, a stable and a pen all occupied by the relevant animals. It was a great place to grow up. After 15 years this house was knocked down for commercial reasons, to make place for an ordinary three-family-terrace house. Not many people really understood why we were sad since the new houses were so much more convenient.
When I think about this house, I see the wooden ceiling of my bedroom and the shapes the branch marks made, the view from the roof, the smell of fire in the morning. For my first project idea for the Elephant I drew from that memory and so I essentially want to photograph what the inhabitants of the Haygate Estate will miss once it is gone.
I will be looking for people who have grown up in the estate or lived there for a long time. I will capture their memories on medium format, when, where and how they want to remember them. In addition I want to record their voices.
Free Photo Shoot with Donation to Fire Relief
5 weeks ago