“These colour photos are from a series shot on Fuji Velvia & black & white film back in 1994.
They depict the Environmentalist Non Violent Direct Action scene that burst into existence just a coulple of years earlier. I had just finished a one year photography course at the St. James The Less School In Pimlico. And someone I met in the Samuel Pepys pub in Hackney suggested I get my arse down there.
Well That was It – The first time I saw that street I was Hooked. I decided straight away that I was going to photograph the Undergound Environmental Movement properly. That Is to say becoming an Activist as well as a Photographer & ignoring the press.
So after a couple of visits of photographing the street & 1 day pulling nails out of bits of wood. I was prepared for the Final Eviction of Claremount Rd. I was on the roofs & In a cargo Net strung between treehouses & the victorian terraced houses before I knew It. And It was the best day of my life.
I was published In the Crusty press & that was it – I met the Underground. Where I was asked ‘What I wanted to do next?’ And my reply was photograph the tree camps ‘Fairmile & Trollheilm’ in Devon.
That was It – next come Reclaim The Streets – The 1st proper big one was In Camden Town In the Early 90’s – And no one has seen those pictures (apart from the Police who raided me about 5 years ago) False allegations were made against me – relating to another photographer. My first proper audience who sitting on my bed going through my photos exclaimed “This Is Another World”. Oh and there was a section back In 1999 the Underground scene got pretty hectic with the squat scene back in the day – there was a lot of drugs & lot of Pisstakers in the end. And a lot of pressure was put upon me to publish. Everyone saying “When are you going to Do Something with your photos” at the same time not really offering any help or advice.
So after being “Jacked Up” & then released from the Funny Farm I went travelling around the world – my thinking being “If I’m going to be miserable anywhere it might as well be abroad. So I went travelling ( without a professional camera) to many different countries & got into all sorts of scrapes & adventures, but that’s another story.
So returning home after my 3rd trip abroad I put an exhibition on at the “Foundry” entitled “Demand The Impossible” & printed up 1000 flyers and leafleted various places (lots of pubs in the East End, The Guardian Newspaper & areas in Hackney where I knew a lot of the Underground would be – very low key.
The Exhibition was a wild success and I got a rave review in Focus – Fine Art Magazine by Bill Troop & the rest they say is history as they say. Well apart from me continuing “Shooting” & Training both at Climate Camp & over In Eire more recently.
It’s been a blast I must say.
And I must give A Big Shout Out to All those selfless Eco Warriors & Worriers out there. With particular attention to those who’ve passed on. Namely Dolly The 93 year old “Protester who was born in Claremont Rd” and to whom there was a 100 foot scaffold tower erected in her honour – That was 1 Hell Of A Climbing Frame.
And of course I must not forget The Police & MI5 / MI6 who have been monitoring us for years and lastly of course – The Press & All those Paps.
To You I can only say Feck You.
Thank you everyone else ….”