‘For me photography is still more interesting when it resonates with what we know. The more everyday the subject, the greater the complexity when it is transformed within the medium. I think the after-image is more compelling and the work more durable when it resonates with what we think of as shared experience’
This statement by the artist conveys both the seriousness and the ambition of his photographs. What it does not evoke is the beauty of the work. Throughout his career he has looked principally at the urban world and made it fresh. The places he shows here are Manhattan, taken from his hotel window, and the Victorian street arches which he walks past from his home in South London. Different images show different weather conditions, inviting us to consider the nature of temporal experience.
What is remarkable about them is that while they are clearly the product of an extended period of consideration, the images convey a sense of crystalline immediacy. His eye is so sure and he takes such care: a dirty old brick wall is made radiant and the delicate tracery of a bare bough is subtly spotlit. Go when you are feeling in need of a restorative treat.
John Riddy, Half-Light is at the Frith Street gallery, Golden Square 23 February – 14 April.