Ben R Wright (1982 / UK)
Ben Wright is a photographer and graphic designer currently based in South East England. Ben studied at the London College of Communication before embarking on a career in graphic designer. It was in 2017 when he rekindled his practice with 35mm, hand-developed black + white film. Ben’s approach is heavily influenced by chiaroscuro. He likes the idea of creating fragmentary individual images which act like hieroglyphics to a larger whole of memory and perception.
My Series, Cornerland began in 2018 when I moved back to the southern English county of Kent where I grew up. I had left in my late teens originally to Brighton on the south coast and then onto London. A common migration for the young.
Around the same time as I returned, I had been gifted a DNA ancestry test. I did not know much of my personal origins beyond a few generations. Waiting for the results, I imagined ancestors from far-flung corners and thought of the apocryphal tales of family histories passed down from previous generations at gatherings. To my surprise and initial amusement the results concluded my ancestors had almost 100% occupied the exact small area I departed from.
The series has allowed me to explore my identity in the place. The relationship with my physical surroundings and also with my personal history. A way of reconnection through the preconceptions I had before returning and fragmented memories I had before I left. A lot of the places I photographed I had been to decades before. There was a sense of the familiar and echoes of the past but also a feeling of exploration. It wasn’t nostalgia but one of discovery.
Cornerland is an ongoing project which I hope to develop as a print project later this year.
To view more of Ben Wright’s work please visit their website.