Sunday, May 29, 2011

You Don't Know What You've Got Till It's Gone - St Helens Shop Destroyed

There are times when I reflect on Tasmanian Modernism and the lack of protection and awareness of our 20th Century buildings. Sometimes it's of a grand building left to ruin like the C.H Smith Complex in Launceston and other times it's scenes of no buildings at all that trigger reflective thoughts of how quickly buildings can disappear from our landscape.

This photograph I took of an empty site barricaded has a story behind it. When I took this photograph in the coastal township of St Helens, only a week had passed since a fire gutted what was once a shop. The day before I took it there were bulldozers ripping apart what remained of the building and only the chimney stack survived... By the time I had returned it too had it's fate sealed.

These kind of scenes to me are very powerful and emotive as they highlight that the places we often taken for granted and have been part of our communities can just as easily disappear forever. Whilst I was taking this photo, a couple walked past, the clouds were building and the presence of the security fence summed up the sombre mood of a building that was once part of peoples collective experiences and memories, a sense of history and place forever erased from the landscape.

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About the project

Join me (Thomas Ryan Photography) on a photographic project documenting Tasmanian 20th Century Modernism from the 1930's to the 1980's. The entire project gallery of 1000+ images and counting can be viewed on my website under art projects. I have been undertaking this project for over a decade.

My portfolio of commercial and art projects can be seen on my website and I can be contacted here as well. All photographs are copyright of Thomas Ryan Photography. Unauthorised use is prohibited. Contact me for all enquires

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