Mark Wilbrey & Gabrielle Davitt

Mark Wilbrey

'Pulling Back the Curtains'

I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being”. (Oscar Wilde)
One of the greatest things about being human is our ability to communicate not only verbally, but visually through gestures (body language) and Countenance (facial expression); no greater place is this seen than on stage.
This documentary project was not only to examine and record visual communications on and off stage, but to reveal the level of unquestionable intimacy and trust between genders, trust not only between actors; but between subject and photographer.
My personal motivation for the project was the love of Theatre, not only as an audience member but as performer both in musicals and drama.

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Gabrielle Davitt

With this project I wanted to look deeper into the fact that many parts of the UK are currently going through one of the biggest regeneration eras. With that in mind I came across Travers Street, a row left in dereliction, which lies just beyond the walls of Middleport Pottery factory. With the council boasting about a bright and promising future for the area being taken over by the schemes I was interested in whether the former residents see these plans as a positive or a negative step. I began by photographing the abandoned houses first from outside, and then in. By doing this I wanted to simply document the conditions of the houses at present, and by collecting and researching information and memorabilia from the previous residents, help build a picture of how the street was once a functioning community.
I found the doors to be the most interesting subjects whilst shooting, as the numbers are out of sequence, often repetitive but the aluminium covers sum up the feel of the street to me now, isolated, closed and off limits.
By mounting and displaying the prints this way, I wanted to recreate the illusion of a street, and for it to act as a sort of timeline. This projects intention is to document the present, whilst paying homage to the past. 


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