I went to see William Eggleston’s photos at the National Portrait Gallery. What a treat… many of the images are of the extraordinary in the ordinary. Just my kind of photograph. And with the passage of time how vibrant his photos have become. On my way home, waiting for the bus I took this photo. In the future this will say something of the past.
In celebration of ‘selfie’ becoming the English Word of the Year (though Microsoft Word has not caught up and has underlined it in electric red), here’s my version. I’m on the Southbank outside the National Theatre, caught between Agitation and Arousal. Who am I kidding? I’m stuck in Agitation!
At the National Portrait Gallery (for excellent Laura Knight exhibition) I ask directions for the loo. ‘Through the shop, downstairs, turn left.’ Behind me a man parrots, ‘Oh, through there, downstairs, turn left.’ ‘Where do you want to go?’ the attendant asks him. ‘I don’t know.’ Pause. ‘Do you sell biscuits?’
Come the summer, part of London’s Southbank is transformed into a seaside-like venue with fun and frolics, a sandy area and quadrangle of fountains. On hot days kids arrive in bathers with buckets and spades. In the midst of it a lady sits alone.
The buses were stacked up on Rye Lane in Peckham so I had to belt along past two buses to reach the one I wanted. En route I spotted this gentleman and quickly snapped him. His stylish headdress is, I imagine, from Afghanistan. I thought about asking his permission to photograph him full-on, but buses wait for no man. As it happens the driver shut the door just as I got there and motioned for me to return to the bus-stop so I ran back there and he kindly reopened the door.