[ 19:25 saturday 22 may – haggerston road ]
after returning from venezuela in january i spent a week scanning my slides plus the backlog from november and december. a couple of days after i’d finished i came home one evening, plugged in the 1.2 terrabyte hard drive where my scanned photos were stored, to be prompted “the drive you’ve connected is not readable. would you like to initialise it?”.
my heart stopped. the drive contained every slide i’ve scanned since 1999. more than six and a half thousand labours of love, each one painstakingly cropped and colour-balanced by my fair hands. the older ones were backed up on a different drive. but over time i’d become blasé and the most recent two thousand pictures weren’t backed up anywhere. it looked like they’d all gone.
eventually i managed to mount the drive and started copying files over. some files had survived intact. however others were corrupted beyond recovery. from the samples i tested it looked like half and half. so i faced the prospect of having to re-scan a thousand slides as punishment for my slack back-up habits.
for the past week i’ve been stuck at home with a nasty chest infection. i haven’t been able to do much but i did take the opportunity to begin the epic job of rescanning. i’ve started with the slides from november, december and january. here’s the first batch, thirty-nine pictures from the krankenhouse squat in crouch end.
krankenhouse was established in a two-storey hospital building from the 1920s which had been squatted for a decade. through november and december i visited quite frequently to see my friend bertrand who was living there whilst working on his fashion design degree. the pictures reflect the fact i was generally there at night, occasionally biking home at dawn.
it was fascinating to build up a picture how the squat functioned, the first time i’ve had this opportunity. krankenhouse was one of the larger squats in london with around twenty-five residents. from the perspective of my thinking about informal decision-making mechanisms it was a community from which i learned a lot.
sadly the writing was on the wall. property developers had acquired the building and gained consent to demolish it and build apartments on the site. its final day was sunday the twenty-first of february. i was there with my camera but those photos are not yet scanned. i’ll write more when those ones are ready to upload. in the meantime i hope you enjoy this first batch.
click any of the images below to launch a slideshow in a new window.
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