When I look at pictures of myself as a child I’m struck by my size. An overwhelmingly small unrecognizable vessel interested in something that I can’t recall in a place that seems foreign. Without the family archives I’d potentially forget variations of who I once was and rely on my memory and the members of my family to recall the former selves in question. Can anyone remember when they were that small? The size of a melon. In “The Lisa and John Slideshow” photographer David Moore makes an agreement with an unassuming family (Lisa, John, and their four kids) and begins to photograph them and their daily lives. Over twenty years later, he shows the family the images and documents their reactions. This time, in the form of a play where Moore presents photographs of the families’ past and two actors playing Lisa and John recall their memories in front of an audience.
Herein we have the images and the play presented side by side. Activating the duality between the two mediums and making for a captivating book experience. All the photographs are color square format images and the flash is omnipresent. Think, Mary Frey, Reading Raymond Carver era, but in color and in England. Lots of dynamic images shot from the ground and waist level. The tonality of the color photographs is consistent throughout and nods back to yesteryear. While at times the family seems comfortable with David’s presence there are moments that seem more sensitive than others. However, it feels intimate enough that Moore could simply be a family member if we didn’t know better. Moore is completely in his element at child level. Ultimately, while I find the conceptual nature of this work as a whole to be quite vast and stimulating I wish there were more images in the book. When Moore has a really good one, they’re really good. For instance, the image of the baby walking towards the television playing the news on the right, with a stroller to the left, and two large sabers hung on a yellow wall below a white clock dead center. It’s quite nice. Not to mention the cake and lollipop images, wow. I just wish there was even more. Fun quick read too, an absolute must for those interested in mixing photography with image making.
David Moore is a widely published London-based photographic artist using and interrogating documentary modes. Moore belonged to a group that has come to be known as “the second wave of new colour documentary in Britain”, having attended West Surrey College of Art and Design, where he was taught alongside photographers such as Anna Fox and Paul Seawright.
David has had solo shows at The Photographers’ Gallery, London, Belfast Exposed, Impressions Gallery, Bradford; The Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool and many others. Current group shows include Home Sweet Home a survey show of British photography at Rencontres des Arles 2019 and touring and Civilisation -The Way we Live Now curated by William Ewing and touring internationally until 2022.
30 years after being made, Pictures From The Real World (Dewi Lewis/Here Press) offered a view on his early work and was published to critical acclaim with reviews in Time Magazine, The Guardian, The Independent, and many others in 2013.