Introduction by Esther Kinsky
To begin with – a sequence of photographs. Pictures which to every beholder will ring a different set of distant bells. Light, colours, landscape, faces – they all trigger memories, and memories make connections, each of them differently. I prefer my gaze to be unencumbered by expectation or knowledge. Free to find its own little hook to latch onto, the fragment to engage with, the resurfacing memory to abandon itself to. But what is an unencumbered gaze?And where does it begin to see? I see a road, a dual carriageway, yellow street signs, a few cars. A road of departure, arrival, passage. A road that could be anywhere – anywhere in Germany. Having grown up in Germany, I’m inevitably reminded of similar roads lined by woodland in the bleak season, without a view ahead. Through the photographer’s eye I see the road from above. Perhaps from a footbridge, linking woodland and woodland. An unsteady structure, swaying under gusts of wind, shaking when a heavy lorry passes underneath. The surface is coarse, creaking and trembling underfoot. I grew up in a land of shuddering footbridges spanning expressways, and I remember the thud of feet on those bridges, running. I remember the flat yellow of road signs like the one on the picture, and a river, a floodplain, rows of poplars, the fringes of a town. Walls of coarse concrete marked by time and weather, steel railings colder than ice, and fires in early winter when the dead leaves were burned.