Projects  » CAMERA BUFF

This project, instigated by Magnum for an exhibition at the Cinematheque Francais in Paris, invited ten photographers to consider the influence of cinema on their work. I chose Krzysztof Kieslowski's Camera Buff (1979); an explanation for this can be found in the 'essays' section of this site. My final exhibit at the Cinematheque was in memory of my wonderful mother Doris, who had recently passed away, although I tried to make a more universal statement about personal loss.

It's centrepiece was a large metal tank filled with water into which a number of short film clips were projected, edited from home movies shot by my father Tom in the 1960's. Each clip was slowed to 10% of it's original speed and was separated from the next by a stream of bubbles which disrupted the surface of the water as one image faded away and another appeared. The sequence was randomly chosen by a computer since memory is never linear. The clips are represented here by film stills.

Meanwhile, I had returned to Leicester - a city in the English midlands where I grew up - for the first time in almost twenty years. In the exhibition these large, out-of-focus images hung around the walls, abstract fields of colour which could only be 'read' when looked at from a distance.