I’ve been exploring ideas of personal space and privacy through photographing my peers’ bedside tables. I chose the bedside table to be my subject as I see it to be one of the most personal areas in a bedroom. By focusing on such an intimate area to photograph we, as viewers, get a huge insight into the type of lives my peers are living.
I was inspired to delve into the idea of privacy and personal items after reading ‘The Human Condition’ by Hannah Arendt. Human Beings are seemingly the only species on earth who have the ability to keep secrets. We as humans all lead two separate lives, our private ones in our own rooms, when hidden away from spectators, and our public ones; the appearances and reputations we uphold. Unfortunately for me and my peers, our private lives have been captured and are now visible for all of you to see.
I wanted to mimic crime scene photography, through the use of the flash to illuminate all the dirty secrets and chaotic fragments of people’s lives scattered across the tables. Collection of Bedside Tables is an archive of evidence of human life, through the dirty cups, old train tickets, contraception and a full ashtray.
After having photographed the tables, I realised how well each photograph matched the owner of the table, the images act as portraits of people, without them being present. It’s these little details that build us up as people, creating each unique human.
Experience:Being HUMAN 2020/21
Archive:Moving Image Archive (National Library of Scotland)