2016, Roll 100 – Christmas on Crosby Beach

These snaps from before Christmas were delayed as I gathered films to send up to FilmDev in one, bumper package, rather than one at a time – in line with my new way of doing things.2016100-008I’d taken a trip up to Liverpool to collect my daughter from university and finally got around to showing her Crosby Beach. For the 18 months that she’s been living in the city, I’d been banging on to her about Antony Gormley’s ‘Another Place’ a couple of miles north of the city. It’s one of my favourite pieces of public art anywhere and consists of 100 cast iron figures spread out across two miles of sand, facing out into the Mersey estuary. I’d been a couple of years previously and took these digital, long-exposures.2016100-010Each of the figures is cast from Gormley’s own body and stands, lifelike at just over 6 feet tall. They stretch from the sea defences out into the water so that as the tide changes, more figures are consumed or revealed.2016100-006I’ve written before about the novelty of the sea for someone who lives as far away from it as is possible in the UK, and even though Crosby isn’t exposed to crashing waves, the place has the usual effect on me. The power of the sea, it’s enormity, coastal weather, even the smell of it are all strange, stimulating and exciting. I can’t imagine what it must be like to see the sea every day. 2016100-012Add in these silent figures, endlessly staring into the distance, as though waiting for someone or something, and it becomes a magical place. The sculptures are rusting, becoming encrusted in barnacles and being ‘modified’ with clothing, jewellery and paint. Despite the controversy that surrounded them when they were installed almost 10 years ago, they remain a fixture and these decorations seem affectionate.2016100-007The low winter sun meant that it was difficult to tell apart the statues from the (slow-moving) dog-walkers, and as the tide was most of the way in, many of the figures were submerged. But I was delighted that Ella appreciated the work as art and spoke about her own response to it. I realised that she’s growing up quickly…2016100-001


Leica M6, Summicron-M 35mm ASPH, Agfa VistaPlus 200 Poundland film processed and scanned by FilmDev.

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