Documentary, Identity and Place – We English

I don’t really know what to write about this work. I was a bit put off by Roberts’ initial remarks on how unemployed people continue fishing anyway and that he was mainly concerned how the economic crises would effect his book sales. Following that he sort of implies that he is able to get his financial support through his network and contacts and how he needs to support his ‘wife and 2 kids’ while they actually go on a 5 month long holiday. Maybe if the article had started about his deep interest in how people and landscape interact, I would have been much more triggered to look closer at his work.

Because that is what I miss, a deeper level of understanding, or a stronger play of lines in the landscape. From there, I read Daniels’ essay, which only enforced the idea of snobbism and generalization of what people from different classes do.

However, I liked the images of his scratch book and see where his inspiration came from. Besides that, I looked at later work and find that there is much more depth and visual interest compared to this set. So, maybe I should look at that first and from there go back to his earlier work to get a friendlier idea about the whole.

Concerning his work, I thought the idea of an image as a tableau was very interesting: The image is a tableau, a site where a compressed narrative can bloom across the frame, where the eye has to scan the image to take in detail. The cut outs of paintings in his notebook are good examples of that and in a few of his images you can see this working. It stimulates me to research other forms of art as well when preparing for my assignments.

Here’s a ‘tableau’ that I took at the Red Fort in Delhi:

tourists 2-1

Daniels, S. (2017). We English. [online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Mar. 2017].



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