One Minute 2011
Gallery of Wonder, Newcastle University
One Minute presents sixty portraits extracted from digitally archived photographs of social and familial groups living in southern regional towns during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Extracted from photographs documenting daily activities, celebrations, regional rituals, traditions and skills, each image reanimates the past and reinstates the individuals that populated these fragments of history within the present. The original photographs capture moments deemed to be of value and significance, and the contemporary viewer responds to the hints of social hierarchy that remain within the extracted portraits. However the uniform processing of the selected individuals responds equally to those who were the focus of attention as well as to those in the background or on the periphery of the original image. In some cases the facial features of the subject are barely discernable, yet the act of concentrating our gaze on these otherwise unnoticed individuals reanimates a sense of individuality, emotion and involvement in a common visual historiography.