Amateur Photographer

Between the acts

Source:   Goodman Park Polling Station, Slough, Berkshire, 6 May, 2010  

Perhaps the best artworks are those that are able to encapsulate a sense of time, place and identity. Back in 1922, James Joyce published his masterwork . The writer’s intention was that if Dublin were wiped off the map by war, the city could be constructed piece by piece using his book as a guide. In his new book, , which charts the 10-year period between the collapse of New Labour and the Brexit vote, Simon Roberts has curated a series of images that perfectly capture contemporary Britain. Each image details our attempts to carve out some sense of identity for ourselves, whether it’s by taking part in war re-enactments, gathering in parks or lining the streets to honour dead soldiers. But as we all know, Britain is a fractured nation – one actually uncertain of its collective identity and, most importantly, what the future holds. If we’re being honest the nation is currently. The seeds of the book began to flourish during one of Simon’s previous projects called , which found Simon travelling across the country in a motorhome between 2007 and 2008 and creating a series of tableaux that captured people engaged in a series of diverse leisure pursuits. It was during this time that Simon noticed that he was building a number of images that presented an interesting perspective of a particular political period.

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