People and Place

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Exhibition - Doisneau

During my couple of days in Paris I took in the current exhibition at Hotel de Ville of Doisneau's Les Halles.  Every time I look at street photography of the 'greats' I see something else.  Generally what I see relates to what work I am involved in myself.  I've only just realised this relationship.  What I mean by this, is I am now more aware of what I am seeing in other peoples work in relation to what I am attempting at the time.
 So what stood out for me this time while viewing Doisneau's work?  Repetition. Going back again and again to the same place. This work spanned 30 years! I guess there is almost an obsession when a body of work means something to you.  Doisneau's Les Halles is the most brilliant record of a place and the people.  He felt strongly that the closing of the market in the centre of the city was like destroying the heart of the city. The moving of the market to Rungis was the end of an era.
How do I relate this to my work? Working on a project, such as my 'life on the streets' becomes part of you. Their lives are more important to me. I care about them and their lives, but I am still an outsider watching and recording.  I don't feel a need to be involved as a charity worker.  Doisneau felt strongly about his subject but didn't become a city planner.
At present I don't see an end to my project. Will I continue for 30 years? Probably not, but it is an interesting concept.

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