Sunday, April 29, 2012


Please try clicking on the icon under the book and to the right with four arrows radiating out to see a preview of my new blurb book. This icon will give you the full screen version.The book came about as a result of a photography project I did on the South Bank of the Thames. Inspired by the celebrations of the 60th anniversary of the Festival of Britain I took a series of photographs on the theme of Fairground '51. I have included an introduction and some poems and captions, the idea being to tap into the spirit of that time, both in the sense of the actual Festival of Britain and also the rekindling of it in 2011 - I think the words help the reader to tune in. There was a strong and emotive atmosphere which made me feel it was not only OK to take photographs, it was somehow nesessary as the artifacts and installations - beach huts, photobooth, fairground attractions and the 1950s ice-cream vans - would soon disappear from sight. However, on the preview you will not be able to see much of the text clearly, even on full "Full Screen." The pictures are clear, which is a good thing, thanks to Blurb. Another reason I took the photographs was because of the joy of making them, just being there as an observer and participator. I hope some of this feeling translates to the viewer of the pictures.


Plutarch said...

A lovely London book. How well you have captured The South Bank in pictures and captions.

Lorenzo da Ponte said...

How remarkably clever of you. Not merely to have put together the book but to have switched my link to what seems like a completely different blog.

I attended the Festival of Britain as an innocent sixteen-year-old and have great difficulty relating that pleasant, rather gay event to the angst-driven articles that tend to be written these about that period in British cultural life.

I particularly like the way Nature has crept on the Wordsworth plaque. Cheaply made in what looks like moulded concrete it should have been an object of national shame when made. But never mind. Forces stronger than its begetters have been at work, cracking and crumbling, determined to convert it into something that looks at least half-organic.

The most distant photograph of the swinging-chair roundabout is quite alarming: as if there had been a quiet explosion and dangerous sharp fragments are flying outwards. No doubt an auteur's tribute to Hitchcock (who's getting some kind of anniversary at the moment) and who proved conclusively, in Strangers On A Train, that fairgrounds are full of menace.

Lucas said...

Lorenzo, Many thanks for your comment. Not sure how the strange link situation came about. I like the fact that your memory of Strangers on a Train and the strange image I took of the High Swing Carousel are linked. Those Black and White films, especially HItchcock's are just one long lesson in photography. I would love to go to a fairground at night and take pictures in low light with a tripod, but who would dare?

Thanks Plutarch, a comment from a fellow embankment frequenter much appreciated.