Looking at the Queen

Looking at the Queen

Medium:Archival Signed Edition Photograph

Size (h x w):41cm x 56cm



Cat. Number:872

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Looking at the Queen


The year was 1971 and London was a glorious arena for visual

exploration.  I had discovered a photographic essay about the

city that had a distinctive sixties feeling.  Images explored the

incidental event using a 'fly on the wall' approach. 

In the sixties I felt the material to be a little self conscious

relying on a pronounced graininess and the fashionable surprise

of matt printing in the reproduction.  There was the implication that

the subject had an innate virtue, there was a desperate search for

a device or approach that would be deemed original.


Fashion photographers had used the camera as a tool of seduction.

War photographers would have to face the unthinkable; can we

begin to imagine their mindset in the face of such extremes.

I have always looked beyond the surface as part of the journey.

The visual processes connect with the restless consciousness to

a point just beyond where we stare into the abyss, and ask,

'who and what are we?'


Locked like strange citizens from the original 'War of the Worlds',

the species stare compulsively with a predetermined destiny.

Each figure seems isolated, alienated from those around them.

The hot city sun, the Edward Hopper shadows contribute a hardness,

even the stone statues seem softer than the living.  Like animals

in a zoo waiting to be fed with an obligatory serving of sovereignty.


Only the making of the photograph would reveal such strange

dimensions that ask the question 'have our perceptions changed

through time, both as revealed in this image and in our reaction to

it now?'


To make the photograph I stood in an open-top car (driven by my

assistant) the car was positioned swiftly between the subject and

the crowd.  I became together with the camera - a device.

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