I was recently introduced to the work of Paul Seawright, the Belfast born photographer by my tutor Robert Enoch. Over the past week I have spent a lot of time on line looking at Seawright’s work and I have also bought one of His Photobooks ‘Hidden Cities’.
Seawright has, since the late 1980’s photographed the aftermath of conflict, starting with an oblique perspective on the sectarian murders of his native Northern Ireland. What I have found particularly engaging about Seawright’s photographs is the rethinking of conflict that is evident in what he includes and does not include in his images.
In his work ‘Sectarian Murder’ Seawright visits the locations of prominent murders during the height of the troubles in Ulster, recording what might now be a mundane scene. The interplay between essentially a benign image and his captions, based upon newspaper reports of the crimes, creates a highly emotive effect on the viewer. Seawright himself talks about there being 3 components involved in his work. The surface image, the caption and the thoughts created in the viewer.
The real impact of this description to me however is that Seawright must see the viewer not as a passive observer but and active participant in the work!
I need to explore this work further and will add more to this blog entry as I look deeper into this photographers images.
Sent from my iPad