Arnos Vale is an area of Bristol that includes Arnos Court Park and Arnos Vale Cemetery. The houses that back onto these places are afforded a rare sense of being surrounded by wilderness, yet the gardens themselves have a distinct urban feel to them.
Boundaries between properties are political in that they exist on maps and in legal documents; but the lived experience of the garden includes views of others’ gardens and exchanges over the fence. In some cases the physical walls have been removed to facilitate more easy access to each others’ property or to accommodate trees and plants. This suggests a tension between the laws and barriers set up to protect oneself and a need to commune, both with nature and with one another.
The photographs were taken in the gardens of houses in Somerset Road and Cleeve Road and seek to present a personal sense of the place.
Over the past ten years I have engaged with landscape photography, concentrating on the idea of how humans interact with their environment as well as making both staged and reportage images of people. I am a Lecturer in Graphic Design and Photography in Bristol, in the UK and will shortly be completing an MFA in Documentary Photography at University of Wales, Newport.
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