It is within the spaces we call home, blank and uniform and ubiquitous, that we first and forever attempt to find and display and see ourselves. Conversely, it is also within these places where we can fully relinquish ourselves to not becoming, where we can do and say and think nothing most freely.
Asking why a home might be important seems almost like a pointless question. It is, after all, our place, with all of our things in and it’s where we sleep. But so much more than the immediacy of a shelter and place to lie, home, the concept of home, is a palimpsest full of the residue of us, extending beyond the boundaries of particular places at specific times. Because it’s where we grew up, or it’s where our family are; it’s where important things, life changing things have played out; it’s where we can be ourselves, or anything else we want to be; it’s where we can rest amongst our own identities and stop all pretense, it’s where we can be naked; it’s where we shit and piss and vomit and bathe and masturbate and make love with the door open. It is where all ceremony and significance begins.
It is not a question of describing houses. On the contrary, we must go beyond the problems of description…
Spaces that do not belong to us but which we must, of necessity and for a limited time only, make our own.
The places in which we make our homes are essentially empty of meaning until we, over time, construct a purposeful sense of meaning within them. They have been considered,designed, constructed and made fit for purpose by others, and it our personal destiny to construct what unique and universal meanings we can.
The primary virtues, those that reveal an attachment that is native to the primary function of inhabiting…
What place do I give to memory in this? It is clearly about my past and what I have become, or what I feel I may have learned and am learning whilst these are places most intimate for me. But the memories do not influence what I photograph. Perhaps it is more immediate, more concerned with what I am becoming and how I might trace this through the spaces in which I have grown. There is also the question of relationships and how various people – my parents particularly, I suppose – have affected me. These people may only be present as suggestions, small inferences that only I might understand. More than likely they will be absent entirely. They are still a presence in my thoughts and my life and I do not need photographs to remember what value they hold for me. In fact, I do not want them to be an explicit part of this project – I do not want to give them up.
So this project is about me. But not a trace of where I have been. It is more an effort to make each place my own and, now that I have a house of my own, bought with my future wife and wherein our son is growing up, I am aware of the significance of our efforts to make a home. Must I find my own way into this space, a way to make it mine, to feel comfortable, to make myself at home?