There is never ‘the’ photographic narrative for any place but always an abundance. Narratives can be attributed by a viewer to an image when no words or context are given. They can be guided by the presenter of the image. Presenters can be many. They could be a photographer, a curator, a journalist or someone showing an album over a family dinner. They can change over time as new understanding and perspective is created. They are infinite.
Photographs can contribute to an understanding of what a place is. They can highlight the many tensions existing in the possible explanations of the place. They can draw attention to issues that need addressing such as injustice, inequality, damage to the environment or crime. Photographs can form a narrative of their own when presented in a sequence. Weight can sometimes be added by combining with words.
‘A narrative is a report of connected events, real or imaginary, presented in a sequence of written or spoken words, or still or moving images, or both. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, “to tell”, which is derived from the adjective gnarus, “knowing” or “skilled”.’ source
So with the skilled use of a camera and some words I propose to create some ‘knowing’ about Pego Marshes. I like the question ‘what does my photography add to a subject?’ I want it to say something new and get an audience to see something special they did not see before.
Here is a draft narrative in a sequence of images with just one word to guide my audience.
From these images it is clear Marjal de Pego has many uses and many stories to be told. Even one word added to a sequence of pictures can create a narrative. I have stated there is no one narrative. In the first two images above if I put a question mark after the word ‘Beast?’ I immediately change the narrative.
Work to do is to explore photographers who have put together narratives of places and understand what their photography has added to that place. By doing this I intend to create an intent for my body of work that will answer the question ‘what am I adding?’