My remain voting friend is white, 6ft, with shaved head, a strong south London accent, and he works in a betting shop. He’s also the most broadly read and widely travelled person you’d be lucky to meet. He told me people had began assuming things about him. One person asked him why he voted leave in the referendum and another casually let on he looked like a Brexit supporter. People were making assumptions based on his race, accent, occupation and the geography of where he comes from.
The work began as as document of the 100 days prior to March 29th 2019, but this changed as the political situation deteriorated and the leave date has been delayed. I visited 9 communities around the country. Some were new to me but a few I’d known from long ago, namely Stoke-on-Trent and Dover. I remember those places being full of movement and the hopeful. They were charged with the sounds of acid house (Stoke) and Brit Pop (Dover). Now, many have left and those people remaining see empty high streets, boarded-up shops and caustic cuts to public services.
Most of people were happy to chat and be photographed, and to share their opinions. Some were concerned about having their views publicly broadcast, so I left them in the project as faces amongst the crowd.
I undertook this project as I was hoping to challenge your – the observer’s – assumptions. Do you see faces which look familiar? What do you feel about their hopes and concerns?
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