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Mass observation

The current exhibition of photographs from the Mass Observation Archive at The Photographers Gallery in London is about to come to an end after 2 months. For someone who has equal interests in the visual and the social, the exhibition ticked all my boxes and I found it fascinating, so much so that I managed to squeeze in two visits during its run.

What struck me was the way the curators seamlessly blended the photographs of the anonymous observers and glimpses of the social captured by more well known photographers such as John Hinde.

In fact I was so struck by the exhibition that I ended up researching into how to become one of the observers myself. With luck, they were (and still are) recruiting for Males aged 16-44 so I filled in the forms and this week had an email confirming that they are happy to add me to their list of correspondents. I am particularly excited by this because I think the value of the data that the achieve captures is immeasurable for really understanding how changes in society actually impact upon peoples lives.

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