Richard Billingham – Ray’s a Laugh

i viewed this book as it was suggested by my  tutor. i was immediately drawn into the book, as i guess it was intended by the photographer. i could feel the gloomy atmosphere of the cramped and kitchy  looking birmingham’s flat of the photographer’s parents, the despair, the loss of hope…it felt painful and uncomfortable to view the intimate scenes from their life.. why were we invited into their lives? i kept on asking myself why to take photos like this ? where is the empathy for the people in front of the camera? is this the revenge of a child who had to grow up in the presence of an alcoholic father and negligent mother ?

i din’ like the colour of many of the images, i found out later that this was a purpose – the images for the book were developed in a local chemist. i am not sure why – to portrait the environment where the photographer grew up does not need to be done by publishing photos with wrongly saturated colours… the layout of the book was not brilliant either, i think some of the strongest images got lost because of the poor layout.

and what i admire ? everything else. the courage to document the life in this raw and painful way. i love the tenderness of the portrait of ray, when he lies in his bed, with duvet up to his head, he looks like a small boy waiting for a bed time story. breaking taboos by showing the life how it is sometimes, even if it is uncomfortable to see…


This entry was published on February 10, 2015 at 8:20 pm. It’s filed under OCA, Resources and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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