This series Je toto lokální, nebo národní zvyk? was produced during a five month artist-in-residence program at the Meet Factory in Prague, Czech Republic from November 2007 to April 2008. I was living in the outer suburb of Prague known as Smíchov, a once thriving industrial area that now consists of abandoned factory buildings, crumbling flats and a major transport hub. The transitory people that inhabit this part of Prague are the protagonists in this body of work.
Due to the language barrier that exists outside the tourist area of central Prague, I was relegated to a muted observer wading through the streets of Smíchov. Instead of using a camera to document what I observed, I packed a trusty Tesco A6 Note Book and a pencil. On my return to the studio, in the early hours of the morning, my memory and basic lead scratchings came together to reconstruct a faithful depiction of my subject. As with the nature of photography there are some glitches rendered in the final images. Like double exposures my memory and the characters’ concerns overlap, diffuse and merge—a photographic truth built on a misinterpretation.
Presented in partnership with the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, Arts ACT and the Australian National University.
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Seven nights after dark